The impact of post-9/11 visa policies on travel to the United States
This paper examines the impact of post-9/11 changes in visa and security policy on business and leisure travel to the United States. American businesses, tourism industry representatives, and politicians pointed to changes in visa policies as being responsible for a sharp decline in short-term visitors following the September 11 attacks. Several foreign governments likewise complained that visa requirements and other security measures were making it difficult for their citizens to travel to the United States. Using an empirical model which distinguishes the impact of visa policy from economic and country-specific factors, we find that changes in visa policy in the aftermath of 9/11 were not important contributors to the decrease in travel to the United States. Rather, the reduction in entries was largest among travelers who were not required to obtain a visa.
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