New York, NY – 15 Jan., 2007 -- As a last minute reminder to
consumers to obtain their passports, sellers of Caribbean destinations and
hotels are offering incentives to obtain a passport in light of the impending
Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), which will be implemented on Jan.
23, 2007 for all travelers re-entering the U.S. via air transportation. Travelers arriving by land and sea will need
to possess a passport as early as Jan. 1, 2008 (date to be determined).
“The Caribbean region applauds the WHTI and the U.S.
Government’s efforts to increase security at the borders,” said Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace,
secretary general of the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO). “However, we believe that by having
different sets of rules depending on one’s mode of transportation -- sea, air
or land -- travelers may become confused, which will discourage commerce and
“We are concerned that the acceleration of the
implementation deadline for airline passengers does not provide ample advance
notice to enable the public to obtain passports,” Vanderpool-Wallace added. Sellers of Caribbean travel hope the following offers
will help keep people traveling to the Caribbean beyond Jan. 23, 2007. Incentives may include full reimbursement of
basic passport fees, complimentary spa packages, golf greens fees, attraction
tours, room upgrades, extra nights and gift shop purchases.
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