MIAMI, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that Florida set another tourism record by welcoming the highest number of visitors of any nine months in the state’s history with 88.2 million visitors, according to VISIT FLORIDA. This represents a 3.3 percent increase over the 85.4 million visitors from the same period in 2016. This includes 77.6 million domestic visitors, 7.9 million overseas visitors and 2.7 million Canadians visitors. Governor Scott made the announcement at Azucar Ice Cream Company, a locally-owned ice cream boutique that has been nationally recognized as one of Little Havana’s top tourist destinations.
Governor Scott said, “Today, I am proud to announce that Florida has continued our record breaking success by welcoming more than 88 million visitors to our state over the first nine months of the year. Florida has had three record quarters in 2017, which would not be possible without our relentless work to market Florida as the top tourism destination. This includes VISIT FLORIDA’s aggressive marketing efforts to make sure families across the world knew that Florida was open for tourism following Hurricane Irma. We will work with the Legislature to invest $100 million for VISIT FLORIDA this upcoming session to continue this success and make sure Florida can continue to break tourism records.”
VISIT FLORIDA estimates that a record 27.9 million visitors traveled to Florida in the third quarter of 2017 (July-September), an increase of 3.3 percent over the same period last year. This Q3 number breaks down to 24.9 million domestic visitors, 2.6 million overseas visitors and 428,000 Canadian visitors coming to the Sunshine State. Total enplanements at Florida’s 18 major airports in Q3 2017 increased 2.4 percent over the same period the previous year, with 20 million passengers. The number of hotel rooms sold in Florida during quarter three of 2017 grew by 4.7 percent compared to quarter three 2016. During the same period, Florida’s average daily room rate (ADR) increased by 3.0 percent and occupancy by 2.9 percent.
Ken Lawson, President and CEO of VISIT FLORIDA, said, “Back-to-back-to-back record quarters in the first nine months of this year show the Florida tourism industry has great momentum. VISIT FLORIDA will not rest on our laurels, but will continue to be at the forefront of creating leading-edge, original marketing programs for our industry partners so that together we can make Florida the number one vacation destination in the world.”