Testimony of Sam Gilliland Chairman and CEO, Sabre Holdings Member, Energy Security Leadership Council Before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources

“Harnessing American Resources to Create Jobs and Address Rising Gasoline Prices:
Family Vacations and U.S. Tourism Industry.”

March 27, 2012

Good morning, Chairman Hastings, Ranking Member Markey, and members of the Committee. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to speak with you regarding the impact that rising gas prices are having on the travel and tourism industry. This hearing comes at a critically important time for the United States, for the global economy, and for our industry.

In addition to examining the impacts of rising energy costs, I would also like to thank the Chairman and Ranking Member for championing proposals that could be part of a comprehensive solution to our nation’s energy challenges.

Travel and tourism is the largest services export industry in the United States and, consequently, a crucial engine for economic growth. One out of every nine jobs in the U.S. depends on travel and tourism. Last year, this industry supported 14 million U.S. jobs and generated $1.8 trillion in economic output.

For every dollar spent on travel, an estimated $2.34 of additional spending cascades through the economy. The travel industry does not just provide a bump to the U.S economy