Houston First Corporation to ‘Move Travel Forward’ in celebration of National Travel and Tourism Week

HOUSTON, TX (May 8, 2023) – Houston First Corporation will spotlight the essential role travel and tourism play in driving growth and innovation as part of National Travel and Tourism Week. Now in its 40th year, the annual industry tradition takes place May 7-13 and was established by the U.S. Travel Association to celebrate the value travel brings to local economies, businesses, and individuals. This year, Houston joins other industry leaders in highlighting how integral travel is to every industry through the theme #TravelForward.

Nationwide, travel serves as a catalyst for a productive U.S. economy and helps power the success of other industries. The U.S. travel industry generated a $2.6 trillion economic output in 2022 and supported 15 million jobs, fueling communities, small businesses and working families across the country.

In Houston, travel and tourism infuses nearly $17 billion into the city’s annual economy and account for more than 120,000 jobs.

Tasked with marketing Houston as a premier destination among the world’s best cities, Houston First Corporation was pleased to see Houstonians valuing and supporting this effort.

“As the sixth largest sector in our region, travel and hospitality is big business here in Houston,” said Michael Heckman, President and CEO of Houston First Corporation. “What this most recent OmniTrak data tells us is that Houstonians understand the value of travel and hospitality and what it brings to our community. It is our job to ensure this industry has the support it needs to thrive and continue to enhance the economy of Houston. That’s our focus this National Travel and Tourism Week and every day at Houston First.”

A 2023 Community Sentiment Report by OmniTrak Research Group revealed Houstonians felt the travel and tourism industry enhanced their quality of life.

Key Takeaways:

  • With a Net Community Sentiment (NCS) Score of 71%, perceptions of travel and tourism in Houston are positive with the number of residents who hold a positive view greatly outnumbering those with a negative view of tourism in their city. By comparison, NCS among Houston residents notably outpaces that of the U.S. overall average of 64%.
  • Tourism’s impact on Creating jobs and employment opportunities (82%), Funding new community venues (78%), and Generating local tax income (77%) are the top economic benefits generated by tourism, according to Houston residents. Similar to the ratings on overall Net Community Sentiment, Houston’s rating on each of these measures of economic impact are stronger than the nation overall.
  • Three-out-of-four (75%) Houston residents perceive that tourism in the city enhances their Quality of Life, and (71%) agree that Tourism has contributed to Improved living standards. As shopping, dining and entertainment opportunities are more easily observed, an even greater number (85%) of Houstonians see such offerings as a Quality of Life benefit of Houston tourism.

This National Travel and Tourism Week, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, with the support of Houston First Corporation, Greater Houston Partnership, and Texas Medical Center, along with participating partners United Airlines and Houston Airport System, are together for the city’s largest tourism and economic development mission focused on Mexico.

The Houston Week mission is designed to solidify Houston’s position as a top city for global trade, tourism, business, and leisure travel from Mexico.

This year’s international trade and tourism delegation is comprised of city and business leaders, technology and start-up incubators, the Houston Rockets, award-winning chefs, artists, and musicians, in addition to Houston’s major hospital systems.

As part of the 2023 activations, the Houston delegation will build on last year’s successes and execute new cooperative agreements and drive strategic discussions with key Mexican diplomats and city leaders to address important issues impacting tourism, healthcare, life sciences, technology, innovation, sustainability, and aerospace in both regions.

To learn more about National Travel and Tourism Week 2023 and how the travel industry is moving #TravelForward, click here.  

About Houston First Corporation:
Houston First Corporation (HFC) is a local government corporation and the official destination marketing organization for the country's fourth largest city. In addition to serving as operator for the George R. Brown Convention Center and some of Houston's most prominent art, entertainment, and event venues, HFC is focused on promoting the city's vibrancy and rich tapestry of culture. By harnessing the city's collective energy, ambition, and creativity, including its diverse culinary scene, world-renowned performing arts, medical and space innovation, and elite filming locations, HFC is solidifying Houston as a premier national and global destination. For the latest news and info regarding HFC, visit www.houstonfirst.com.

HFC Contacts:
Carolyn Campbell (832) 982-9902
Jennie Bui-McCoy (832) 374-3994

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International Tourism