Visit Orlando hopes to see more travelers as holidays approach

Orange County Convention Center expected to host more events next year

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Visit Orlando touted two campaigns it’s pushing ahead of the holiday season during an Orange County Tourist Development Council meeting Friday morning.

The Orange County Convention Center also gave a presentation in which leaders discussed the current state of tourism.

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According to the Orange County Convention Center’s website, 67 conventions were cancelled and 48 were rescheduled this year due to COVID-19.

But officials highlighted bright spots and talked about some convention center events that have already kicked off, such as Winterfest.

Orange County Comptroller Phil Diamond said the convention center is vital to the economy.

“You talk about the impact of a single family coming here from Ohio or New York or wherever, and that’s good, but if you talk about the impact of 10,000 or 50,000 people coming here, that’s huge and that’s what the convention center brings,” Diamond said.

During the first quarter of the new fiscal year, the Orange County Convention Center said they will play host to 18 events, with 65,000 expected attendees and $42.5 million in economic impact.

“Orlando is the top trending search for travel destinations right now,” Diamond said.

It’s something Visit Orlando’s Becca Bides said they are hoping will translate to visitors.

She said they have two campaigns they are pushing, one called “Off to Orlando,” which she said focuses on Floridians and those within driving distance, and the other is called “#LoveOrlando.”

Bides said they’re a little soft in bookings right now for Christmas and the holidays, but added that people are booking later and closer to their vacation date, so she said hopefully they’ll see more of a lift as the holidays get closer.

About the Author:

Lauren Cervantes was born and raised in the Midwest but calls Florida her second home. She joined News 6 in August 2019 as a reporter.