I’m quite sure that at this point, every last person on earth has heard the news. Just in case you’ve only just returned from an off-grid trip and for whatever reason the first thing you decided to do was check this site; Trump is the new president-elect. But what implications does this carry for us travellers?
The short answer, the really short answer, is nothing. But life is never quite that clear cut and this is one of the many much more complicated instances. In truth, it depends.
Following Brexit, some parts of the UK experienced backlash, as is currently happening in parts of the USA. However, in the UK a rise in hate crime and racism also coincided with the Brexit result, with a minority believing that it meant if you weren’t white British, you had to leave the country. Daft little monkeys aren’t they?
This fact would probably be irrelevant had Donald Trump not explicitly, and quite famously, stated that he wanted to ban Muslims from entering the States. As a businessman, a hotelier at that, he ought to know how stupid an idea that really is, but apparently he doesn’t quite grasp the concept of markets or supply and demand. It doesn’t bode well for America if their president has seemingly little knowledge of economics.
In practice, this will probably never happen. Despite the republicans now holding “all the power”, there’s only so much Trump can do without the rest of congress agreeing to it – and lets be realistic here, these guys have been leading a world power for years, so I doubt they’ll succumb to the sudden rise of “Making America Great Again”. (On a side note, “America”, does this mean Trump is also planning to make Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Columbia etc. great again? They are technically part of America)
Anyhow, this means that Trump won’t be blocking Muslims from entering the USA any time soon. Whether you still want to visit the country after watching his presidential campaign unfold is another story.
As for the rest of us, the story is much the same. Tourism is still a major part of the US economy (31% of services exports, in fact) and with Mr. Trump aiming to bring back jobs to the USA from abroad, there will be other implications with this (which I’ll discuss shortly). Our good friend Donald wants to double the size of the American economy, and he won’t be able to achieve that by stifling the growth in major sectors – getting into the country is probably not going to become any more, or less, difficult than it currently is.
Implications. My favourite. A similar situation happened in the UK with Brexit. When a country becomes more insular, international relations change and that has a very real economic consequence. For the UK, the sterling plummeted in value. The price of fuel and other common goods grew, and generally the British public were poorer. Sounds dire, but in reality, that means that visiting the UK just became a lot cheaper. A weakening pound means you get more currency to spend.
As the international benchmark currency, the situation could be much different for the US Dollar. I know at home we’re hopping it plummets so that the pound revalues and we can get petrol at a reasonable price, but you know, us Brits can be quite greedy sometimes.
Realistically, the same will happen to the dollar as has to the pound (Edit: Or not, it’s still rising), and at least in the short term, visiting America will be that tiny bit cheaper. They’ll also be looking to manufacture and export more products, so Americans might be feeling the pinch but the rest of us will be enjoying our new, cheaper travelling.
The TL;DR of it all is immigration will probably stay the same, Muslims won’t be banned from entering the country, and you’ll potentially get more bang for buck when you’re there. We also get to laugh at Americans* for at least 4 years.
It’s not all bad, right?
* You’re free to laugh with us America, it’s probably the best way to get over the shock of what just happened. I know how you feel, I suffered Brexit.