Blueprint Creative Group

Hello North Dakota Debuts, Florida tourism breaks records, Hawaii Tourism Hits Rest

North Dakota Tourism Increase

The travel industry is making a strong comeback in 2023 with Florida taking the crown and other destinations vying for their piece of the global tourism market even as international tourism has not fully rebounded.

Florida Emerges as the Ultimate Vacation Destination with Record-Breaking Tourism in 2022

Miami Beach

Florida saw record-breaking tourism in 2022, with 137.6 million people visiting the state, up 13% from 2021 and 5% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019. The increase came even as international tourism has not fully rebounded. Florida’s lack of COVID-19 restrictions was credited for attracting visitors. Hotel room nights sold statewide increased nearly 13% in 2022, and occupancy rose by 9.4% to 70.5%. About 38% of visitors flew to Florida, slightly lower than in 2019. While international tourism grew in 2022, it was still 28% below 2019 levels due to slow visa wait times and pandemic restrictions.

Hawaii Tourism Authority's $34 Million Contract Redo Sparks New Bidding War

Explore Hawaii

The Hawaii Tourism Authority is re-bidding two contracts, one for U.S. marketing and the other for destination management, which were originally part of a $34 million contract awarded to a community non-profit but was later canceled by a government official. The previous contract had been awarded to the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement over the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB), which has traditionally marketed the island to the U.S. and has protested the new contract. Under the reset procurement process, the convention bureau may still win the U.S. marketing contract, which would begin in June 2023 and end in December 2025.

All of this is likely to meet the destinations forecasted growth with projected revenues of $17.4 billion by the end of 2023 and an estimated $28.4 billion by 2033. The industry was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic that led to a reduction in the number of visitors. However, recovery is expected to accelerate from 2023 onwards. The government has launched projects and policies to improve infrastructure, which is a significant driver for tourism. 

New campaign alert: “Hello North Dakota”

North Dakota has launched a new tourism campaign “Hello” to increase awareness of the state and attract visitors. The campaign was developed in response to a 2022 national awareness and perception study by travel marketing firm Development Counsellors International, which found that travelers across the US were generally unfamiliar with North Dakota, despite it attracting 23.7 million visitors in 2019, a record for the state. 

With a limited budget of $3.1 million, North Dakota plans to spend more on digital ads this year while also distributing 275,000 travel brochures and 40,000 hunting and fishing guides by mail and at locations like visitor centers and rest areas. The state believes that these printed materials can help build trust with prospective visitors and increase the likelihood of repeat trips.

The tourism officials are seeking inspiration from the travel industry and other sectors to promote North Dakota and showcase what sets it apart.

Insights from the Travel and Tourism Research Association’s Marketing Outlook Forum

Explore Puerto Rico

The Travel and Tourism Research Association’s Marketing Outlook Forum in Houston had over 200 industry researchers, marketers, vendors, and partners in attendance. Among the key takeaway is that 2023 will test the U.S. labor market’s resilience, as consumer finances weaken, wage growth and consumer spending slow, and an increased ability to predict demand and staffing needs. 

Air travel demand remains strong, but staffing shortages, labor and fuel costs have limited airlines’ ability to meet surging demand. Additionally, there is a critical need for pilots, airline mechanics, and air traffic controllers. Meeting planners are optimistic for continued group business growth, but event expectations are high, and sustainability is top of mind. Attendees are looking for unique, memorable experiences that cannot be replicated virtually, and nearly half of meeting planners are willing to pay more to make their event more sustainable, yet their appetite to absorb additional costs is minimal.

Puerto Rico tourism takes a page out of Florida’s handbook and promotes “Sunshine”

North Dakota Tousim Sights

Puerto Rico’s latest marketing campaign, “Sunshine to Spare,” focuses on showcasing the island’s orange-colored sunshine on a range of products.

Puerto Rico’s tourism industry is expected to have a positive outlook in 2023, with $8.9 billion generated in revenue from travel and tourism in 2022, a 39% increase from 2019. The number of group room nights booked doubled in 2022 compared to 2021, and the number of events booked for 2023 is 81% higher than in 2021. Despite Hurricane Fiona causing extensive damage to the island, the tourism infrastructure remains intact. The island will be hosting several tourism conferences in 2023 and has been boosted by Frontier Airlines adding five nonstop routes to San Juan. 

TikTok Bans by State Governments Create Marketing Challenges for Tourism Agencies


Several U.S. states have banned the short-form video sharing platform, TikTok, following executive orders that forbid government employees and agencies from using the platform on government devices due to national security concerns. These bans have affected state tourism agencies, which had been using TikTok to expand their reach and promote tourism. Some states, such as South Dakota, Arkansas, and Utah, had even allocated funds for advertising on the platform. However, with the ban in place, these state tourism agencies have diverted their resources to other social media channels, such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. They have also shifted their short form vertical video focus to Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts. Influencer collaborations, which were previously done on TikTok, will now be conducted on competing platforms like Instagram.

Social Sharing
continue reading