FROM THE ARCHIVES
Continued from Page 8
The headline actually dates from Sept. 19, 1977,
when ASTA began an even earlier project to develop an ID card program for members. The cards
were to be voluntary and available for “a nominal
fee.” As the story reported, ASTA “hopes to encourage all industry suppliers to make it a standard practice to ask agents to prove who they are
before granting reduced-rate privileges.”
NEW PASSPORTS ARE
DESIGNED TO REDUCE FRAUD
This could be a reference to last year’s introduction of computer chips in U.S. passports — but
it’s not. The headline is from April 15, 1993, and
refers to “high tech” features to reduce fraud, such
as the holographic image superimposed over the
photo, imprints on the visa pages to make each
one different plus new inks and paper. Such was
“high tech” a mere 15 years ago.
‘The plot to kill travel’
One of the industry’s biggest scares of the 1960s was President Lyndon Johnson’s proposal for a tax
As early as 1965 there had been talk of a “travel gap,” as prosperous Americans were traveling
more and spending more overseas than their international counterparts spent here.
To improve the balance of payments, Johnson urged Americans to curtail international travel.
He also proposed taxes on foreign spending by U.S. tourists, a 5% international ticket tax on air
travel and a per diem tax on all transportation after a traveler had spent 12 hours at a primary
In his report on Jan. 9, 1968, Alan Fredericks, then managing editor of Travel Weekly, called it “the 1968 version of the shot heard round the world.”
Editor and publisher Irwin Robinson attacked the tax plan in an editorial under the headline “The Plot to Kill
A stunned industry mobilized itself and public opinion to fight the plan and to encourage inbound travel as
a constructive way to ease the so-called “travel gap.”
To project the message beyond the industry, Travel Weekly ran full-page ads in the New York Times and the
On Capitol Hill, industry witnesses testifying in opposition to the proposals received top-level congressional
backing by the Senate and House minority leaders, both Republicans. Rep. Gerald Ford said the move was “like
trying to treat cancer with a Band-Aid.”
“The Johnson administration abandoned the idea of curbing U.S. travel abroad,” Fredericks reminisced in Travel
Weekly’s 25th Anniversary issue in 1983. But he noted that Johnson “continued to imply that travel outside this
country was less than patriotic.”
FOREIGN SHIPLINES FACE
TIGHTER U.S. CONTROLS
This story reported a move by U.S. Customs to
crack down on the cruise line practice of including brief stops at foreign ports on cruises that operate between two U.S. points, and it singled out
one particular itinerary that included a brief stop
in Ensenada, Mexico, on cruises from the West
Coast to Hawaii.
The story said cruise lines serving Hawaii and
Alaska were particularly worried about the proposed restrictions.
You’d be correct if you said this sounds suspiciously like a story that broke last year, when
Customs launched a crackdown on token calls at
But it only sounds like it.
This headline and story appeared 35 years ago,
on Jan. 2, 1973.
EXECUTIVE ADVISES RETAILERS
TO CATER TO BABY BOOM
Continued from Page 8
knowledge of travel was basically limited to the fastest
way to get to Belmont Park.
Fortunately for me, the powers at TW bet a long shot
and hired me to manage the publication’s destination
writers, a talented group whose firsthand knowledge of
the world was impressive.
The first time I was responsible for
running the news side of Travel Weekly
— most of the top editors were either
on vacation, ill or otherwise indisposed
— I walked into the traditional early-morning news meeting with five “OK” stories I confi-
See REMEMBER on Page 12
This headline refers to some pretty common advice, so we’ll give you a clue: the executive is Bob
Dickinson, who retired last year from a long career at Carnival Cruise Lines. That takes care of
the Who and the What, but When was this sage
Try 26 years ago, in Travel Weekly’s Cruise
Guide for March 8, 1982, back when boomers
were, well, young!