Visit Orlando - Tourism Matters
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We started out with a goal to say "Thank You" in a BIG way, and achieved a Guinness World Records title doing it. #OrlandosBIGThankYou


Visit Orlando Events


May 24
Power Hour Lunch - Canvas Restaurant & Market
Canvas Restaurant & Market

13615 Sachs Ave.
Orlando, FL 32827
Time: 12-1 p.m.
Make and strengthen connections during your lunch hour and enjoy the cuisine from local chef Bryan Thoman, influenced by Florida's Southern and Latin American roots at Canvas. This is a great opportunity to experience the growing Lake Nona community and network with fellow members. (The lunch at Canvas will focus on networking - there will not be a formal presentation.)
Cost: Visit Orlando Members - $25
Click here to register.

June 1
Member Orientation

Recommended for both new members and long-time Visit Orlando members to learn:
• How Visit Orlando markets the area as a convention, meetings and visitor destination;
• The benefits of membership; and
• How to take advantage of the value-added services available exclusively to members.
Click here to register.

June 7
Power Hour Lunch - Copper Canyon Grill
Copper Canyon Grill

9101 International Drive #1220
Orlando, FL 32819
Time: 12-1 p.m.
Cost: Visit Orlando Members - $25
Click here to register.

Member Presents
Members interested in targeting the meetings and convention market can present their products or services during monthly, 30-minute sessions with Destination Services. Click here to schedule a session.

Member-to-Member Offers

Orange Lake Golf

Holiday Inn Club Vacations at Orange Lake Resort is more than a stay, it is a place to play. Enjoy seven swimming pools, including a lazy river-style pool, waterslides, miniature golf courses, arcades, four golf courses, tennis, an 80-acre lake with plenty of watersports, a fun zone and more. Visit Orlando Members save 20-25 percent off your stay. Call 866-892-5890 to reserve.

Citrus Club is offering Visit Orlando members 10 percent off the entire food and beverage total on all new events booked taking place in 2017. If you book two or more events together, you receive 15 percent off total. Call Citrus Club directly to redeem offer. Offer Code: 2017

Orlando Convention Photographers is offering Visit Orlando members 25 percent off photography services for business portraits, services, meetings and marketing materials. Offer code: 012317


Orlando City Soccer Club is offering Visit Orlando Members discounted tickets to upcoming Orlando City and Orlando Pride games. Click here to find tickets and a promotional code!

United World Soccer Florida Mall is offering Visit Orlando members 15 percent off jerseys such as Orlando City, and $20 off footwear. Members also receive $10 off items already on sale. For redemption, use offer code SaveinMay17 at register at the Florida Mall location.

Florida HIA (Hospitality Industry Association) is offering a $5 discount individual membership (normally $25) for Visit Orlando members and their employees through May 31. Company memberships are 50 percent off. Florida HIA provides members with more than 50 free attractions and hundreds of exclusive discounts around the state. Be a tourism advocate for your employees and encourage them to experience Florida. Click here for offer redemption.

VR Orlando Rentals is offering Visit Orlando members 20 percent off on any Virtual Reality Rental package. To redeem, call or email with the offer code "VISITORLVR" and the discount will be applied once the booking is confirmed.

Do you have an offer that you would like to see posted? Submit an offer to Visit Orlando Member Relations here!

Industry Events

HSMAI's Luncheon on May 24 at Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites features a Universal Update with Vince LaRuffa and Tim Bailey.


I-Drive 360 Live Join Orlando's top businesses, vendors, and local artists for an evening of fun, food and live music on May 25 and experience Orlando from new heights atop the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye. Company Coca-Cola Orlando Eye capsule sponsorships available.


K1 Speed Orlando Monday Night Hospitality Special! $12 races, plus $3 mini bowling. Industry employees must show valid ID or recent pay stub. Offer valid Mondays only.


Texas de Brazil would like to offer $8 off their regular pricing on Hospitality Mondays! Offer valid for up to four guests. This is available for all people within the hospitality industry. Must show business card, check stub, ID, etc. to receive special discount.

Community Events

Through May 21 & June 1-11
Murder for Two
Winter Park Playhouse

May 25
Throwback Thursday Tour
Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College

May 25-Sept. 10
Sea and Sky: Watercolors and Drawings by Paul Signac From the Arkansas Arts Center Collection
Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College


June 2-3
Wine Quest Annual Wine Tasting and Auction
Loews Royal Pacific Resort

June 2-Aug. 20
Florida Prize in Contemporary Art 2017
Orlando Museum of Art


June 3-Sept. 4
Identity: An Exhibition of You
Orlando Science Center

June 6-11
Fairwinds Broadway Presents Finding Neverland
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

Through June 11
Matthew Weinstein: The Living End
Orlando Museum of Art

June 14-July 9
Mad Cow Theatre


June 15
3rd Thursday Gallery Hop Downtown Arts District
CityArts Factory

June 17
CFAMily Day
Cornell Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College

June 19-23
World Ballet Competition's 2017 Finals
Central Florida Ballet, Orange County Convention Center, Chapin Theater

Through Oct. 15
Tin Can Tourism Exhibit
Osceola County Welcome Center and History Museum


Through July 2
Architects as Artists
Art & History Museums - Maitland, Maitland Art Center

Connect With Visit Orlando

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Be sure to follow @VisitOrlando on Instagram and Twitter, fan us at facebook.com/VisitOrlando or watch YouTube.com/VisitOrlando for more insider information about the world's most famous destination!

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President & CEO's Message

May 19, 2017

Orlando Tops U.S. Meetings Destinations

George Aguel Just last week we celebrated another record-breaking year for Orlando tourism - 68 million visitors in 2016! On the heels of this exciting news, we also received word that Orlando has once again been named the No.1 meetings destination in the United States according to the industry's leading industry event management company, Cvent. This repeat honor demonstrates our leadership in the industry and is a reflection of the significant investment our members, and our own organization, makes to market and sell Orlando as the premier location for meetings and conventions.
Thanks to the hard work of so many, the Orange County Convention Center is expected to surpass 1.4 million in attendance in 2017 - establishing another new record. So far, we are off to an incredible start, as attendance through April is up 21 percent over last year. In fact, last month was the busiest April in the center's history - surpassing 2016 by an astonishing 117 percent!
Due to our area's ease of accessibility, incredible venues, wide range of accommodation choices, and - of course - the employees who make up our community, Orlando has become the gold standard of hospitality for meeting professionals around the globe...and that is worth celebrating!

-George Aguel

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From the Research & Insights Desk of Visit Orlando

Orlando the Top Memorial Day Destination

Orlando was identified as the top destination for Memorial Day weekend based on AAA travel bookings. AAA is forecasting that travel over the Memorial Day weekend will increase 2.7 percent from last year.  According to the forecast, 39.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Memorial Day weekend, the highest travel volume for the holiday weekend since 2005.  Travel is forecasted to increase despite gas prices, airfare and hotel rates all trending higher than last Memorial Day. Americans appear to also be taking advantage of the strong U.S. dollar as five of the top 10 destinations are international.

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Visit Orlando Updates


Creating Tourism Ambassadors

Visit Orlando President and CEO George Aguel joined Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer along with U.S. Travel Association's Roger Dow at the CFHLA Tourism Ambassador luncheon last week. The luncheon provided insight and statistics about the economic impact and importance of the hospitality industry in Central Florida to local business leaders who were sworn in as official Tourism Ambassadors.


Fox News Highlights 'Orlando on a Budget'

The Visit Orlando Public Relations Team generated a story on FoxNews.com (28 million UMV) about how to do Orlando on a budget. The article includes a top 10 list of affordable activities, ranging from Disney Springs and I-Drive 360 to the free family courts at USTA and enjoying our resort pools.


AAA Living Features What's New for Summer

The Visit Orlando Public Relations Team assisted with a story on what's new this summer for AAA Living Magazine (circ. 2 million). The article opens by saying "Orlando is Central Florida's hot spot, a place that people like to visit again and again-and for good reason. This summer is no exception, with groundbreaking new additions to both Universal Orlando and Walt Disney World."

brazil video

U.K. Newspaper: Orlando "Fun for all ages" 

The Visit Orlando Public Relations Team assisted with a story appearing on the London Evening Standard online (3 million UMV), which highlights that Orlando is "not just for kids" and "fun for all ages" while focusing on what to do and eat/drink, and where to stay.


Showcasing Orlando's Uniqueness

Visit Orlando's Convention Sales Team and participating members recently showcased Orlando's unique meeting and event capabilities to meeting professionals in Houston. The high-value planners in attendance represented corporations, associations and intermediary accounts with multiple opportunities for future conventions to be held in Orlando.

Pictured are meeting planners from HelmsBriscoe, Apache Corporation, National Association of Lease & Title Analysts, International Facility Management Association, Dynegy, Stone Fort Group, Alliance Meeting & Conference Management, International Association of Government Officials and Targa Resources.


D.C.-Based Team Networks at PCMA Event

Visit Orlando's Washington DC-based Sales Team attended Professional Convention Management Association's (PCMA) Education Foundation's Visionary Awards on May 3 at the Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C. More than 1,000 business event professionals attended, including many of our top convention clients who received awards. The global event strategy organization's second annual awards event recognizes experts in their professions in the industry for their contributions.

Pictured, from left, are: LaVette Henderson, National Dental Association; Tanya Kirchner, ASIS International; Ron Keith, Barb Herod and Faye Memoli, Visit Orlando; and Sara Wiltshire, Irrigation Association.


Conference Direct

Visit Orlando Destination Partner of the Year

For the fourth year in a row, Visit Orlando was awarded 2016 Destination Partner of the Year at ConferenceDirect's Annual Partner meeting held May 1-3 in Baltimore. Orlando is the global meeting planning company's No. 1 booked destination. More than 800 hotel and destination partners from around the world were in attendance.

Pictured, from left, are: Betty Wilson, senior vice president of Business Development for ConferenceDirect; Ken Barnett and Aitza Diaz, Visit Orlando; and Brian Richey, executive vice president and co-founder of ConferenceDirect.


Brazilian Celebrity Meet & Greet Promotes Orlando

During a dedicated Orlando day at Sao Paulo's largest travel fair hosted by Agaxtur on May 13, two popular Brazilian celebrities and Orlando advocates Carla Fioroni and Mauricio Schuartz participated in a Meet & Greet with consumers. During the fair, located in one of Sao Paulo's premier shopping centers with an average traffic of 60,000 people per day, consumers could purchase Orlando packages, receive a vacation planning kit, and learn more about the destination.


Blog Shares Things to Do This Father's Day

A recent Visit Orlando blog shares "10 Things to Do With Dad in Orlando" this Father's Day, including activities for all types of dads and their families at theme parks, foodie destinations and sporty spots.

Brazil blogs

Brazilian Travel Blog Promotes Destination

Visit Orlando's Publicity Team worked with the popular Brazilian travel blog Mochilando, which has 354K followers on Instagram, 270K likes on Facebook and 65K UMV, on four blog posts focusing on Orlando attractions and venues. The posts feature tips on how to navigate Universal Orlando Resort with their exclusive app and the benefits of lodging on Universal property hotels, and highlights of attractions and activities outside the theme parks such as I-Drive 360 and downtown Orlando's Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.


Debut Travel Leaders Network Show a Success

With more than 2,200 travel trade professionals, the debut of Travel Leaders Network International Conference held April 29- May 3 at Universal's Loews Royal Pacific Resort exceeded estimated attendance numbers. TLN is the largest seller of luxury travel, cruises, river cruise and tours as well as the largest travel professional organization selling corporate travel. The Visit Orlando Travel Industry Sales team assisted with the newly formatted event, which combined the Vacation.com, Travel Leaders Associates and Results! conferences, providing access to 33 percent of the travel agencies in North America, with 7,000 agency locations in the United States and Canada, representing over $17 billion in annual sales. Attendees also enjoyed the Orlando tradeshow booth that featured a photo opportunity depicting them on a rollercoaster.

Orlando Arts

May/June Orlando Arts Magazine Available

The May/June 2017 issue of Orlando Arts Magazine, the official publication of United Arts of Central Florida, is now available. Feature coverage includes Orlando Ballet's A Cinderella Story and the Orlando Fringe Festival. Visit Orlando produces and publishes the magazine as part of a community partnership with United Arts. To subscribe, call Visit Orlando at 407-354-5552 or contact United Arts of Central Florida

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News About Orlando


At the Center

Group Meeting Start End Estimated Attendees Estimated Economic Impact
Vision Star Entertainment, Inc. Europa Games & Get Fit Expo 2017 May 20 May 21 15,000 $14,775,000
Citrix Systems, Inc. Citrix Synergy 2017 May 22 May 25 5,000 $9,850,000
Informa Pop Culture Events, Inc. MegaCon 2017 May 25 May 28 68,940 $39,561,540
Million Dollar Round Table Million Dollar Round Table June 3 June 7 13,000 $25,610,000
Premiere Shows, Inc. Premiere Orlando June 4 June 5 57,000 $112,290,000


Guinness Proves Orlando Appreciates Visitors

Guinness World Records was on hand last week during Visit Orlando's announcement that a record-breaking 68 million tourists visited Orlando in 2016 to recognize the destination with setting the record for 3,144 hand-written "Thank You!" cards for past visitors. The event launches Visit Orlando's  year-long campaign to thank visitors.

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Fandom Fun at MegaCon Orlando

MegaCon, the southeast's largest comics, sci-fi, horror, anime and gaming event will descend upon the Orange County Convention Center May 25-28. Attracting up to 100,000 fans, attendees can expect major celebrity guests, cosplay and more.

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March MCO Traffic Increases

In March some 4 million travelers moved through MCO, which is a nearly 2.9 percent climb over the previous year. For the first quarter of the year, traffic at MCO is also up nearly 2.9 percent with more than 11 million passengers.

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New Sesame Street Land Coming to SeaWorld

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has announced a new Sesame Street land is coming to SeaWorld Orlando by fall 2022. It also announced it will develop an additional Sesame Street Place theme park in the United States.

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Orlando No. 1 Meeting City in U.S. – Again

Cvent has ranked Orlando as No. 1 in its 2017 Top 50 Meeting Destinations in the United States. It's the fifth year in a row Orlando has taken the top spot in the online event management software company's annual ranking.

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Universal Taking Reservations for Aventura

And as of May 10, Universal's Aventura Hotel - the newest on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort - is accepting reservations and will be ready to welcome guests on Aug. 1, 2018.

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UCF Downtown Campus Breaks Ground

The groundbreaking at Orlando's Creative Village last week marked a milestone for the future downtown campus to be shared by UCF and Valencia College. The campus is expected to serve 7,700 students from both institutions when it opens in 2019.

Read More

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Industry News


Airline Customer Satisfaction Higher Than Ever

According to the recently released J.D. Power 2017 North America Airline Satisfaction Study, overall customer satisfaction with airlines has reached its highest level ever, continuing a trend that now stretches five consecutive years.

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21K Travel Industry Jobs Added in April

The travel industry added 21,200 jobs in April 2017, accounting for 10 percent of all new non-farm jobs - and the highest job increase since November 2015, according to the U.S. Travel Association's analysis of the Labor Department's recent employment report.

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Survey: Americans Stay Plugged In on Vacation

A new consumer survey by Travel Leaders Group indicates that while 94 percent of those polled "have taken or will take" at least one leisure trip this year, 62 percent will stay "plugged in" to work emails and voice mail.

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Report Shows Travel Industry Going Strong

A new report from online travel booking agency CheapOAir shows that the travel industry is growing at a healthy clip. CheapOAir's research indicated that travel was up 50 percent over the first quarter of 2017 compared to the first quarter of 2013.

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Latest TTI: Inbound International Travel Slowing?

International inbound travel growth continues to avoid an outright decline, remaining in positive territory in March 2017, but the sector's more modest growth underscores a projected slowdown, according to the U.S. Travel Association's latest Travel Trends Index (TTI).

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CDC Zika Information

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), its most current data available at the time of this writing (for the period of Jan. 1, 2017-May 17, 2017) indicate that 0 locally acquired cases have been reported in the United States, while 119 travel-associated cases have been reported. For the most current information about the Zika virus, visit the CDC's Zika page.

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