Montana Joins National International Tourism Plan - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Montana Joins National International Tourism Plan

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MISSOULA - The White House announces a plan to boost international travel to the United States and Montana's Office of Tourism is joining the effort.

The state office of tourism has been promoting Montana abroad for more than 20 years in key markets like Canada, Scandinavia, Western Europe, East Asia and Australia.

University of Montana research shows 1.8 million international travelers came to Montana last year, and spent $438 million while here.

Part of the White House initiative challenges tourism industry groups to launch coordinated strategies with BrandUSA, a nonprofit created to deliver unified messages about U.S. travel opportunities to international audiences.

"So, they're saying, you know, come to the U.S. and then leaving it up to the individual states to at that point to get people to come here," explained Daniel Iverson of the Montana Office of Tourism.

To join the White House efforts, the Montana Office of Tourism plans to increase its international marketing program budget $1.2 million by 2016.

In 2013, Montana hosted 11 million visitors who added more than $3.6 billion to the state's economy.

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