Last year, Visit Orlando’s “The Wonder Remains” campaign was a big hit, generating nearly 5 billion global impressions and over $200 million in visitor spending to support our destination’s ongoing recovery.

Building on this success, we recently launched the campaign’s next phase to keep Orlando top of mind for spring and summer travel. Throughout 2022, expanded advertising efforts across multiple platforms will focus on key domestic markets, the UK, Canada, Mexico and — after two years of minimal activity due to the pandemic — Brazil. 

Brand USA is partnering with us in our overseas markets, which will help extend our reach, and we’ll keep you posted on results as the year goes on.

These consumer marketing efforts make up just one facet of how we’re promoting our destination and attracting visitors to assist in our recovery. Read on to see other ways the Visit Orlando team is working to strengthen our region’s No. 1 industry.

Gearing Up for IPW

U.S. Travel Association’s IPW is the nation’s leading inbound travel trade show, and it takes place this year June 4-8 at the Orange County Convention Center. We’re planning exciting events and experiences to showcase our destination. For example, last week we assisted U.S. Travel representatives in scouting locations to host their Chairman’s Circle, a difficult choice with so many incredible venues across Orlando.

In years past, IPW conferences have generated more than $5.5 billion in future travel by connecting U.S. travel exhibitors with buyers and media. Orlando hosted in 2015, and we are thrilled to serve as the host city once more. Look for further developments in the coming weeks, including potential opportunities to get involved.

Attending Visit Florida’s Premier Trade Shows

Our travel industry and convention sales teams recently attended two of VISIT FLORIDA’s premier trade shows in Tampa: Florida Huddle and Florida Encounter. Florida Huddle highlights the best of our state to tour operators and wholesalers from both domestic and key international markets, while Florida Encounter is one of the longest-running meetings trade shows.

In all, our teams conducted over 100 appointments, promoting what’s new in 2022, our Orlando Travel Academy online training platform and Orlando as a meetings destination. 

We also hosted a client appreciation event in conjunction with 25 Visit Orlando member companies. Nearly 100 guests from our travel industry and meetings client base attended this event, providing opportunities to further develop business in Orlando.

Celebrating Local Black History 

As we continue to celebrate Black History Month, we’ve partnered with content creator Katrina Dandridge (@isntlifedandy) to explore historic locations in Orlando, including Hannibal Square Heritage Center and Wells'Built Museum.

Katrina’s visits inspired guest blogs about her experiences at each location, as well as a series of Instagram Stories for our social channels, which have earned 54,000 impressions and counting. The first blog covers her time at Hannibal Square Heritage Center in Winter Park and its impact on our community. Her second blog on the Wells'Built Museum will be published later this month. 

Orlando Travel Academy in the Media

I’m pleased to share that our publicity team has secured nearly 20 stories in seven countries on the relaunch of our Orlando Travel Academy — examples include Travel Industry TodayTravel Weekly UKTravelweek (Canada) and Contacto News (Mexico). This coverage means we are reaching travel professionals around the globe with information about how our revamped digital training program and app can assist their Orlando sales efforts. 

Valentine’s Day in Orlando

Are you ready to make your move this Valentine’s Day? According to TravelPulse, Orlando is America’s No. 1 romantic destination for Valentine’s Day — and if you’re still searching for that perfect experience, you’re in luck. We have a brand new blog highlighting the most romantic dining options in Orlando, as well as one covering activities, gifts and more. So make your plans now before it’s too late!  

Around the Destination

This week Orlando hosted two major events at the Orange County Convention Center: the International Builders’ Show and Kitchen & Bath Industry Show. It was a delight to attend the opening ceremonies alongside our destination services team and hear from keynote speaker Magic Johnson.

I also had the pleasure of joining a panel discussion to help kick off the KBIS Women in Network initiative, a mentoring program for women in the kitchen and bath industry. Thanks to Suzie Williford, EVP and Chief Strategy Officer for NKBA, and the other panelists for having me!

Hotel Metrics

For the week ending Feb. 5, Metro Orlando hotel occupancy was 56.6%, a slight dip from the past couple of weeks but fairly stable over the course of the past month. Average daily rate rose $1.15 to $134.18.

Across the Industry

OBJ: Spring break 2022 travel booking activity ahead of 2021, closing gap with 2019

Northstar: Meeting volume up 350% from January 2021

TravelPulse: These are US travelers’ most sought-after spots for summer trips

News13: First Brightline train arrives in Orlando

FOX 35: Orlando ranks No. 1 as best place to get married in 2022

OBJ: How the Frontier-Spirit airline merger affects Orlando

U.S. News & World Report: Four Seasons Resort Orlando named best hotel in Orlando

Casandra Matej

In your service,

Casandra Matej

Casandra Matej | President & CEO
Visit Orlando