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Los Angeles Has Seen A Double-Digit Drop In International Tourism So Far This Year

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(Photo by Greg Wass via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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2017 has seen a sharp decrease in foreigners visitors to the United States, with Los Angeles and San Diego being the most impacted by the drop.

According to an analysis recently released by FourSquare, both L.A. and San Diego "saw strong [year-over-year] gains in fall 2016, but international tourism has dropped sharply in Q1 2017."

[In April], the U.S. government published the Q1 2017 economic growth figures, and many economists were disappointed to see anemic GDP growth under 1%. Simultaneously on the political front, the nation has been occupied by the news of administration shakeups and the debates on national security, not to mention in-flight tech limitations and changing immigration and tourism visa policies.

"From our data, residents of the Middle East and Central/South America are avoiding the U.S. more than residents of Asia, Europe and elsewhere," the report continues, but cautions that political factors and the administration's shift in tone are not the sole or chief reasons for the decline in international tourists.

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According to CBS LA, the Southern California region saw a 16% drop from the first quarter of 2016, with a projected loss of 800,000 tourists over the next three years.

This report comes on the back of the Los Angeles Tourism and Convention board announcing record-high tourism figures for 2016.

"Los Angeles County’s record-setting 47.3 million visitors injected an all-time high $21.9 billion into the local economy in 2016," a report by the board states. "...Traveler spending generated $33.6 billion in total economic impact for Los Angeles County (including the induced and indirect benefits). Tourism contributed more than $2.65 billion in state and local tax revenues in 2016."

The board recently released an ad campaign for Los Angeles called "Everyone Is Welcome" to help combat the drop in tourism.