Visit Orlando - Tourism Matters
Featured Event
Annual Luncheon

Dec. 7
Annual Meeting and Luncheon

Hilton Orlando
6001 Destination Pkwy.
Orlando, FL 32819

Click here to register now!


Join the Conversation

Visit Orlando got into the Halloween spirit this week with a "creepy" (but fun) prank on visitors at the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye. See what our sneaky social media team was up to. It's for the dogs!


Visit Orlando Events

power hour

Oct. 25
Power Hour Lunch

Bulla Gastrobar
110 S. Orlando Ave #7
Winter Park, FL 32789
Time: Noon to 1 p.m.
Enjoy a three-course lunch with flavors from Spain, and share updates on your business during your 30-second elevator speech.
Cost: $25 for Visit Orlando members
Click here to register.


Nov. 2
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.
• How to take advantage of the value-added services available exclusively to members.
Click here to register.

Nov. 8
Power Hour Lunch

Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.
Universal City Walk
6000 Universal Boulevard
Orlando, FL 32819
Time: Noon to 1 p.m.
Power Hour is heading to Universal CityWalk! It's a great opportunity to connect with fellow members over a fun meal from Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. All attendees will have complimentary valet parking.
Cost: $25 for Visit Orlando members
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's a place to play. Enjoy seven swimming pools, including a lazy river-style pool, waterslides, miniature golf courses, arcades, four golf courses, tennis and an 80-acre lake with plenty of watersports, a fun zone and more. Visit Orlando members save 20 to 25 percent off their stay. Call 866-892-5890 to reserve.

Citrus Club is offering Visit Orlando members 10 percent off food and beverage on all new events booked in 2017. Book two or more events together and receive 15 percent off the total. Call Citrus Club to redeem. 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


Balmoral Resort Florida is offering stays starting at $99 for Visit Orlando members. Stay at the fabulous new Balmoral vacation home resort at Haines City, just minutes from Legoland. Contemporary homes with private pools and spacious townhomes, just steps from the clubhouse. $99 for townhome, $125 for a pool home. Use code VOM for redemption by calling 866-6-VILLAS or email bookings@feltrimresorts.com. Subject to availability. Some restrictions may apply.

Roy's Restaurant $20 dining credit! May be redeemed for any dining purchase. Valid in Main Dining Room for dinner only. Cannot be used for tax, gratuity or gift card purchases. No cash value. Not valid with any promotional offers, including Aloha Hour. One redemption per table. Provide the Offer Code: VOMember2Member, on Open Table or to the host when making reservations.

Orlando Watersports Complex is offering half-price riding every Wednesday from 4 p.m. to close during summer hours, and from 2 p.m. to close during winter hours. Offer code: VOM2M

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

Industry Events

Oct. 25
HSMAI Luncheon - Sports Commission Update
Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Resort

Dec. 8
USA-China Tourism Research Summit
UCF Rosen College

Community Events

Through Oct. 26
Orlando Film Festival
Downtown Orlando

Oct. 21
Immerse 2017
Creative City Project

Swan Lake

Oct. 27
Swan Lake Orlando Ballet
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

Oct. 28
The Pineapple Ball
Rosen Shingle Creek

Nov. 4
MBA Orlando Pride Gala
Rosen Shingle Creek

Nov. 4
One Voice Orlando: A Year of Reflection
Timucua White House

Nov. 8
Mid-Florida Business Hall of Fame
Rosen Centre Hotel


Nov. 9
Tokyo Soul
Dragonfly Robata Grill & Sushi

Nov. 10
Art in Odd Places: NOISE
Downtown Arts District

Nov. 11
Cows 'N Cabs
Winter Park West Meadow

Nov. 12 thru Jan. 3
Christmas at the Leu House
Harry P. Leu Gardens


Dec. 9
Harlem Globetrotters World Tour
Amway Center

*Save 25% by using SAVE25

Dec. 16
CFHLA Hospitality Gala
Hyatt Regency Orlando

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President & CEO's Message

October 20, 2017

Travel Puts Americans to Work

George Aguel

In Central Florida, tourism supports 1 in 3 jobs and generates $64 billion in annual economic impact. Now, a new study by the U.S. Travel Association shows just how important our industry is to the country's labor force as a whole.

According to "Travel: America's Unsung Hero of Job Creation," Americans whose first job was in a travel-related industry obtained an average career salary of $81,900, significantly higher than those starting in most other U.S. industries. Even better, 40 percent now earn more than $100,000 a year. In addition:

- The majority (52 percent) of travel jobs - which include those in transportation, hotels, restaurants, entertainment and related fields - pay middle-class wages or higher.

- The travel industry offers a statistically better career starting point for Americans with less education. Workers with a high school degree or less whose first jobs were in travel reached an average career salary of $69,500, 5 percent greater than the average salary attained by workers who started in other industries.

- The leisure and hospitality sector, which is heavily dependent on travel, is the No. 1 small business employer in the U.S. From 2010 to 2016, travel jobs increased by 17 percent, compared to 13 percent job growth in the rest of the private sector.

Facts such as these provide much-needed context that, unfortunately, is not often recognized. The truth is, our industry offers a valuable service not only to our guests, but also to our hard-working employees and our economy.

—George Aguel

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From the Research & Insights Desk of Visit Orlando
September Hotel Occupancy Soars

Hotel occupancy in September was 76.3 percent - 12.5 percent higher than the same month last year - and the average daily rate rose 10.9 percent to $111.35. While September's results were impacted by Hurricane Irma, the month continued the strong performance the destination has experienced throughout most of 2017. Orlando's occupancy rate was up 4 percent year to date through September, compared to 0.6 percent growth for the overall industry and no growth in occupancy among STR's top 25 markets. Orlando's average daily rate has risen 4.5 percent year to date, versus 2 percent growth nationwide and 1.4 percent growth among the top 25 markets.

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Visit Orlando Updates


Visit Orlando Named
Best CVB in Southeast

Laurel Herman, publisher of Prevue magazine, presented Orlando with the Gold Award for Best CVB/Destination Experience in the Southeast to Visit Orlando's SVP of Sales & Services Fred Shea at IMEX Americas last week. The Visionary Awards are given annually to acknowledge the industry's forward-thinking destinations, hotels and resorts, cruise lines and airlines.


Integrated Campaign
Underway in Canada

Visit Orlando is running television spots in Toronto as part of an integrated campaign that includes digital, social and tour operator co-op efforts. Canada represents Orlando's No. 1 international market, with almost 1.2 million visitors to the destination each year.


Smart Meetings Touts
Orlando for Adults

Visit Orlando secured a destination feature in Smart Meetings, an award-winning publication for meeting professionals. "Orlando is 'Adulting' Big Time" showcases what's new in Orlando for meeting planners, highlighting improvements at Orlando International Airport, renovations at resorts and hotels, updates at area theme parks, and new dining and entertainment options for attendees.

MS Ignite

Teamwork: Microsoft
Ignite a Big Success

An article in Corporate & Incentive Travel magazine, "Orlando: The No. 1 Meetings Destination - Through Thick and Thin," detailed how Orlando landed the 26,000-attendee Microsoft Ignite conference, held at the Orange County Convention Center, and how it went off without a hitch just two weeks after Hurricane Irma hit Central Florida. Vivian Eickhoff, event director for Microsoft Ignite, credited the city's top-notch planning teams at the OCCC - "from the sales director to the account manager" - for Orlando's success as a meeting option. Fred Shea, Visit Orlando's senior vice president of convention sales and services, described how Visit Orlando and the OCCC worked to get the message out that Orlando was back to business as usual.


Philly Mission Targets
Key Meeting Planners

In conjunction with members, Visit Orlando hosted a successful sales mission in Philadelphia at Stateside Urban Craft Distillery. The meeting professionals in attendance source groups for key association, corporate and third-party companies that result in future business for Orlando.



New York Times Digs
Halloween in Orlando

Thanks to Visit Orlando's publicity efforts, the New York Times named Orlando one of "6 Spooky Travel Destinations for the Halloween Season." "The home of Disney World and Universal Studios goes all-out with huge Halloween events," the Times reports.

Baby Harlen

Instagram's Most Popular
Baby Visits Orlando

With more than 215,000 followers, Instagram's most followed baby - Harlen Bodhi White, or @harlenbodhiwhite - visited from the UK with his family to explore some of Orlando's most exciting attractions that cater to families with babies and toddlers. From Walt Disney World and SeaWorld to the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye and Orlando Science Center, baby Harlen and 6-year-old sister Harlow (@harlowlunawhite, 68,000 followers) shared their holiday adventures on Instagram.

UK journalists

Top-Tier UK Media
Dine in Orlando

The public relations team hosted UK journalists from top-tier outlets as part of a SeaWorld Orlando press trip. The journalists learned about the array of activities the destination offers for adults. Outlets included OK! Magazine, the Daily Mirror, Best Magazine, Woman's Own, Woman, Now Magazine and the Manchester Evening News.

meeting planners

Meeting Planners Get
Behind-the-Scenes Tours

Visit Orlando convention sales, along with the Corporate Event Marketing Association, presented an exclusive, two-day, behind-the-scenes personal tour of Microsoft Ignite for more than 30 meeting professionals. Visit Orlando's showcase of our destination's meeting-and-event capabilities also included the Disney Institute's "Business Behind the Magic Tour" at the Walt Disney World Resort. Pictured are event marketing planners from Intel Corporation, OSlsoft, etech, One10, Opus Agency, Event Marketing Partners, Plantronics, Xponet and the YMCA.


Stirs Up Social Media

Visit Orlando's social media team has been hitting the streets to share some spooky scenes from all across our destination. In recent days, our Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels have featured a "spider dog" pranking unsuspecting guests, a 60-foot spider nesting at the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye, and an insider's guide to Halloween events in Orlando.

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News About Orlando


At the Center

Group Meeting Start End Estimated Attendees Estimated Economic Impact
American Society of Human Genetics American Society of Human Genetics 67th Annual Meeting 2017 Oct. 18 Oct. 20 8,000 $15,760,000
Team Global USA, Corp. Team Global USA 2017 Convention Oct. 20 Oct. 22 3,600 $7,092,000
American Trucking Associations, Inc. ATA Management Conference & Exhibition 2017 Oct. 22 Oct. 24 3,000 $5,910,000
Gordon Food Service, Inc. Gordon Food Service 2017 Oct. 25 Oct. 25 3,000 $5,910,000
North American Spine Society NASS 2017 32nd Annual Meeting Oct. 25 Oct. 27 6,500 $12,805,000
Take us 2 The Magic Limited Scottish Highland Dance Festival 2017 Oct. 28 Oct. 28 1,100 $2,167,000
International Pool & Spa Expo c/o Informa (formerly Hanley Wood) International Pool & Spa Expo 2017 Nov. 1 Nov. 3 11,103 $21,872,910
Association Event Ventures, Inc. dba AE Ventures Total Tech Summit 2017 Nov. 1 Nov. 3 1,000 $1,970,000
Florida Nursery, Growers & Landscape Association, Inc. The Landscape Show 2017 Nov. 2 Nov. 4 7,168 $14,120,960

Orlando No. 3 Best
City for Vegans

WalletHub released its report on 2017's Best Cities for Vegans & Vegetarians, and Orlando was No. 3 on the list. Our city had the highest share of restaurants serving vegan options at 31.14 percent. The 100 largest cities were ranked across 15 key indicators.

Read More

Harry Potter Celebration
Set for Jan. 26-28 

The fourth annual Celebration of Harry Potter, Jan. 26-28 at Universal Orlando, will feature a series of panels, memorabilia from the films and appearances by several actors from the movies, including the Weasley twins.

Read More

Disney Expands
In-Park Rideshare

Disney's Minnie Vans - a collaboration with Lyft designed to make it easier for guests to get around in the large park complex - is now available to guests staying at any of Walt Disney World's deluxe resorts.

Read More


TripAdvisor: Disney
Restaurant No. 2 in U.S.

Victoria & Albert's received the No. 2 spot in TripAdvisor's top 10 fine-dining restaurants in the U.S. The Walt Disney World restaurant was second only to contemporary French restaurant Daniel in New York City. About 400 fine-dining restaurants are recognized this year.

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New Hotel Now
Open near SeaWorld

The 181-room Holiday Inn Express and Suites Orlando at SeaWorld is now open and features kids suites, an outdoor pool, an on-site fitness center, meeting space and more. As an official hotel of SeaWorld, the property also offers exclusive park benefits at SeaWorld and Aquatica.

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Mall at Millenia
Celebrates 15 Years

To celebrate its 15th anniversary, the Mall at Millenia commissioned Ben Van Beusekom to create an iconic 15-foot tall installation inspired by the mall's architectural theme of man's relationship to the universe, Earth and time. It can be viewed in Grand Court through Oct. 23.

Read More

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Industry News

Business Travelers
Have Positive Outlook

The American Express Business Travel Survey found that 91 percent of Americans enjoy business traveling, with 62 percent saying they enjoy the face-to-face interactions traveling provides.

Read More

How Augmented Reality
Impacts Meetings

According to Skift, augmented reality will soon change the way that meetings and events are conducted, providing attendees a completely immersive environment.

Read More


Just How 'Tethered'
Are We on Vacation?

Project: Time Off's new report, "The Tethered Vacation," looks at how the tech-fueled transformation of the workplace is creating new problems when it comes to employees working off the clock, outside the office.

Read More

Live Like Locals
When Traveling

A new study by Allianz Global Assistance shows millennials live like locals when they travel for vacations, with 83 percent using services like Airbnb and Uber. They spend just over $1,300 on average, which is $1,000 less than travelers over the age of 35.

Read More

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Tourism Ambassadors
Academy Sports ARDA Bags Balmoral Resort BB&T
Best Buy British Airways Clear Channel Outdoor Darden Florida Distributing Company
Florida Hospital The Florida Mall IOA The Mall at Millenia Orlando Economic Development Commission
Orlando Health Orlando International Airport Orlando Magic Orlando Premium Outlets OUC
Orlando Sanford Airport Smart City Tupperware Brands
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About Visit Orlando
6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Suite 400
Orlando, FL, 32821, US
Visit Orlando is the official tourism association for the most visited destination in the United States, with representation in more than a dozen countries around the world. Visit Orlando, together with its 1,200 member organizations, represents the area's leading industry.SM.