From the turquoise beaches of Pensacola to the laid back attitude of the Florida Keys – and every playground, adventure and attraction in-between – it’s no wonder Florida is a premiere visitor destination. With more than 800 miles of beaches – making Florida’s coast the largest in the continental United States – 1,250-plus golf courses, and nearly year-long summers, it’s no surprise our tourism industry is robust, impactful and growing.
According to VISIT FLORIDA, the Sunshine State welcomed 93.7 million people from all 50 states and more than 180 different countries in 2013- a record number for Florida. In fact in 2013, Orlando alone welcomed 59 million visitors.
Florida isn’t stopping there. With every 85 visitors to Florida creating a new job, our state will continue to strive for record-breaking visitation. So far, the first half of 2014 has welcomed more than 50 million visitors – shattering all previous six-month figures. And for Florida, these visitors directly equate to more than one million jobs.
“Last year, Florida welcomed nearly 94 million visitors- each ready to enjoy all our state has to offer,” said Bob Miles, President of Bags, Inc. “At Bags, Inc., we are here to make travel easier for each of the millions of travelers to our state. Our business success comes from both the hard work we have put into our company and the successful job organizations like VISIT FLORIDA are doing to market our state.”
In fact, VISIT FLORIDA recently announced new marketing initiatives at the 47th Annual Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism with Governor Rick Scott. Florida’s official tourism marketing corporation will create and strengthen six programs to market our state to visitors- including a three-year partnership with National Geographic. VISIT FLORIDA will also target international travelers with tablet apps of the Official Florida Guide- featured in 7 languages, free and usable without WIFI- and will launch a Shop Florida marketing campaign in at Fashion Week Sao Paulo.
“Brazil is our No. 1 overseas origin market,” said Will Seccombe, President and CEO of VISIT FLORIDA, in a recent press release. “And Brazilians are one of the best things to happen to our economy. They come ready to shop because, even at regular prices, most goods and services in the United States are much more affordable than in their home country. And in Florida, they can get high-quality goods combined with the luxury of high-quality destinations.”
The impact tourism has on our state cannot be denied. At the Florida Chamber, we will continue to advocate for partners like VISIT FLORIDA, Enterprise Florida, and innovative businesses like Bags, Inc., who help our state continue on the right path.
Learn more about Florida’s tourism industry or get involved with our international initiatives by contacting us at 850-521-1200.