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Orlando draws record breaking 51 million visitors in 2010

In simultaneous events, Orange County, Fla., Mayor Teresa Jacobs, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Visit Orlando President and CEO Gary Sain have announced that Orlando drew a record-breaking 51.455 million visitors in 2010, up 10.5 percent from 46.6 million in 2009. Domestic visitation accounted for 47.78 million visitors, a 10.3 percent increase over 2009; and international travel totaled 3.675 million, an increase of 12.6 percent from 2009.

With this record, Orlando is the first destination in the country to welcome more than 50 million visitors and remains the most visited destination in the U.S.

“Despite the challenging economic times, the Orlando tourism and meetings community continued to invest in new hotels and attractions,” said Gary Sain, president and CEO, Visit Orlando. “Visit Orlando launched aggressive global marketing campaigns showcasing that Orlando offers visitors something they can’t get anywhere else – world famous attractions, value for their money and an experience they will never forget.”

To attract visitors throughout 2010, Visit Orlando initiated new marketing campaigns in its top feeder markets – the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Brazil – reinforcing the tagline, “Orlando Makes Me Smile.” A new meetings and conventions marketing effort touted Orlando as the destination “Where Inspiration Meets.”

“The tremendous efforts of our tourism industry were instrumental in helping our community weather the recent economic challenges,” said Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs. “This is a positive sign for our region and our residents; as travel and tourism goes so does Orlando’s economy.”

The tourism industry supports approximately 400,000 jobs for Orlando residents, which generates $13.6 billion in wages.

“Travel and Tourism is our number one economic engine by far. It also gives back to our community through support of the arts, education and community organizations,” said City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “These numbers are tremendous. For our region to continue its recovery, we need for our Travel and Tourism economy to lead the way. Today’s announcement is wonderful news and I am so proud of our Travel and Tourism partners for their success.”

Additional visitation information includes:

  • Visitation from Canada, Orlando’s top international feeder market, was up 11 percent to 960,000 travelers in 2010 compared to 865,000 in 2009.
  • Total domestic overnight visitation was up 10.7 percent to 30.5 million
  • Overnight convention-group meeting visitation was 3.24 million, up 1.4 percent in 2010.
  • Hotel room occupancy was up 6.3 percent in 2010.


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