Travel to New York City Booms

new yorkNew York City Tourism: A Model for Success, the first-ever official report on New York City’s tourism industry highlights the exceptional growth of the tourism industry after the 2006 merger of NYC & Company, NYC Big Events and NYC Marketing

The three groups form a public-private municipal marketing and tourism model that has been emulated by destinations around the world with the city reporting a record 52 million visitors. 

Also, the city reports an all-time high of $55.3 billion in economic impact and a 27 percent increase in leisure and hospitality jobs—the most of any industry over the last seven years. The report was released today to key local media and the leading 2013 mayoral candidates. 

“Tourism’s robust growth since 2006 is no accident—it was the result of an innovative model and deliberate strategy to target emerging international markets and promote the diversity of tourism activities across all five boroughs,” said NYC & Company Chairman Emily Rafferty. “In order to maintain this momentum and reach our goal of 55 million visitors and $70 billion in economic impact by 2015, the industry will be looking for continued investment and support from the next administration.”

“The story of New York City tourism’s unprecedented success is one that we should all be proud of,” said NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta. “Over the past six years we have welcomed more visitors than ever before and have generated billions of dollars in economic impact for the City."  

Since 2006, the city has set new visitation records in six out of seven years while the tourism industry created 78,200 new leisure and hospitality jobs. Over the past seven years numerous industry sectors experienced exponential growth including hotels, cultural institutions, the conventions and tradeshows market, dining, retail, Broadway and entertainment. The report highlights several key data points reflecting this continued success, including:

Record 11 million international visitors, a 52 percent increase over last six years

Record 363,050 hospitality and leisure jobs

Record 29 million hotel room-nights sold

167 new hotel properties, including 72 hotels outside of Manhattan

Record annual 24.5 million cultural visitors, up 30 percent since 2006

95 percent increase in direct spending from convention visitors

23 million retail shoppers helping generate $8 billion in spending

12 million Broadway attendees in 2012

Much of this success was a result of NYC & Company’s concerted effort to target international travelers, who stay longer and spend more than their domestic counterparts, and the company’s focus on highlighting activities and attractions in all five boroughs to reach new demographics and repeat visitors, NYC & Company said.

Currently the city has expanded its global presence with representative offices in 18 countries—including emerging economies such as Australia, Brazil, China and India, all of which have seen visitation go up by more than 100 percent.  

As the city developed into the top overseas destination in the country, NYC & Company also launched several marketing and communications campaigns designed to reach key markets.