Choice Hotels Waives Cancellation Fees for Restricted Travelers
Choice Hotels is
waiving cancellation fees for travelers unable to enter the U.S. because of
President Trump's immigration ban. "Choice Hotels supports efforts to
ensure the safety and security of the United States. At the same time, we
urge the administration to find a balanced approach that promotes travel,"
the company said. Choice is the first major U.S. hotelier to issue such a
statement. American Hotel & Lodging Association president and CEO Katherine
Lugar asked the Trump administration for a swift resolution of its visa review
According to a Global Business Travel Association straw poll
of 58 travel buyers about President Trump's executive order to suspend
immigration privileges for travelers from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan,
Syria and Yemen, 31 percent of
respondents expect the ban to reduce their companies' business travel in the
next three months. Similarly, 29 percent expect the ban to negatively impact
their companie' business travel over the next three to six months, while 28
percent expect the negative effects to extend longer.
That's not good for business travel or for the economy,
according to GBTA executive director and COO Mike McCormick. "Business travel drives lasting business
growth and is a leading indicator for jobs. With 30 percent of companies
expected to reduce travel, the economy will certainly take a hit," he
said. GBTA strongly supports the U.S.'s Visa Waiver Program, which provides
visa-free entry to the U.S. for citizens of 38 partner countries. Not only do
partner countries' own security standards qualify them to participate, the U.S.
also thoroughly vets VWP travelers before they enter the U.S.
Asked about their
top concerns regarding the travel ban, 63 percent of GBTA survey respondents
cited the potential to make travel more difficult for U.S. travelers, 56
percent cited complications in travel to the U.S. and 54 percent cited
potential for increased threats against U.S. travelers abroad.
business travelers, 55 percent of the travel buyers surveyed by GBTA cited
uncertainty regarding the credibility of green cards and visas for entering the
U.S. 50 percent were concerned about harassment of U.S. travelers to and from
the Middle East and 50 percent were troubled by the potential for increased traveler
harassment in general.
Half opposed Trump's executive action, while 38
percent supported it.