VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – Governor Ron DeSantis and Visit Florida officials announced a new in-state marketing campaign aimed at promoting in-state travel to Floridians during a news conference on Wednesday in Daytona Beach.
“Our data shows that while many are willing to travel right now, people are more comfortable getting closer to home and are now more comfortable driving,” said Dana Young, CEO of Visit Florida.
The new campaign will be seen on televisions, billboards and social media websites.
“We believe our tourism industry will be better than before,” added Young.
[RELATED: Florida reports fewer than 2,500 new COVID-19 cases]
DeSantis has campaigned to attract more tourists to the Sunshine State.
The governor contended that tourists could safely take commercial flights to Florida as newly reported coronavirus cases fell below 3,000 on Wednesday, compared to a high of nearly 12,000 per day in mid-July.
Speaking to industry executives at an air travel forum in Fort Lauderdale, DeSantis said he had never heard of a passenger contract the virus on an airplane.
“If this industry thrives, it will provide this economic security to so many people in Florida,” DeSantis said.
Airline and airport executives told DeSantis that the virus is having the biggest impact on international travel to Florida as many countries have put travel restrictions and quarantines on people traveling to and from the United States.
[READ NEXT: DeSantis calls theme parks reopening ‘success story,’ flirts with easing capacity restrictions]
According to DeSantis, 8.8 million people traveled to Florida from March through June, compared with 24 million in the same period last year.
“We are down 60%, our tourism industry has been, to put it bluntly, decimated by this crisis,” said Young. “The good news is that Florida remains undoubtedly the best vacation spot in the world.”
DeSantis said that from March 1 to June 30, when the numbers were compared year over year, the number of visitors to central Florida fell 67%. During the same period, DeSantis said the demand for rooms in local hotels fell by 75%.
“This is really going to be an invaluable tool for showing people that Florida is back,” DeSantis said.
Copyright 2020 by WKMG ClickOrlando – All rights reserved.