JIS News

Several Jamaican agencies are partnering with overseas entities to cushion any serious fallout that could result from a new travel policy by the United States Department of Homeland Security.
The Jamaican Consulate this week joined the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) and the US Postal System in urging Jamaicans, Americans and other nationals wishing to travel to Jamaica, to have a valid passport before taking the trip.
Under a new immigration law, known as the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), which goes into effect soon, all travelling US citizens must be in possession of a passport.
Addressing a group of history students at the University of Hartford, Connecticut, on November 29, Consul-General, Dr. Basil K. Bryan noted that the travel advisory would impact, in some way, on Jamaica’s tourist industry.
He pointed out that the US continued to be the primary source of visitor arrivals and visitor spending, which showed record growth for the first nine months of this year.
Recent statistics from the US State Department showed that more than 70 per cent of Americans do not have a valid passport.
Dr. Bryan said that an incentive programme was in place to encourage more Americans to obtain a passport through an accelerated programme with the US Postal System.
Some 50 students participated in the discussion session organized by faculty members, Dr. Christine Grant, a Jamaican and Dr. Joan O’Mara.