The U.S. Needs Tourists. Why Make Visiting So Hard?

As many Americans living or traveling overseas returned home for the holidays in the past couple of weeks, a lot of them spent time stuck in long lines to clear immigration and customs, staring at warnings about the symptoms of measles and Middle East respiratory syndrome. But far longer waits were reserved for foreigners coming to the U.S. for business or tourism, supporting an industry that employs 8 million Americans. Recent research suggests that if the U.S. made the process of visiting America a little less painful, more people would come—and spend money, and create jobs. Although the U.S. prides itself on openness, it’s one of the world’s least friendly nations in terms of the bureaucracy required to visit. It’s time for that to change.

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