Florida Tourism Numbers at All-Time High


Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) announced that Florida’s domestic tourism levels have returned to pre-pandemic levels and have even reached an all-time high. In 2021, Florida had a total of 118 million domestic visitors.

“In Florida, we put freedom first, and as a result people are choosing to vacation in our state from across the country and the world to escape lockdowns, including the politicians who advocated for those reckless policies and who are often spotted vacationing here,” said DeSantis. “While tourism in other states is only just beginning to recover, Florida is at the front of the pack — now we are surpassing pre-pandemic levels and setting new visitation records. I’m thankful that VISIT FLORIDA continued to market our state throughout the past two years, and I am confident that 2022 will be another great year for Florida’s tourism industry.”

Other reports have indicated that people have not only been vacationing to Florida, but many are fleeing their home states to move to Florida.

Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis said in an interview with One America News that DeSantis’ leadership is why people are coming to Florida.

“I can just lead with two words: Ron. DeSantis,” Patronis said. “This guy is covered in Teflon. He has fought for policies that have been difficult to bring in for a landing, but he’s brought them in for a landing. He’s kept the state open, he does his own due diligence, he studies the data, and if the data doesn’t hold up the crazy policies that this administration is pushing out, he will fight back, and he believes in states’ rights.”

According to data from VISIT FLORIDA, 29 million domestic visitors came to Florida in the fourth quarter of 2021, which is a 57 percent increase from 2020. Florida’s hotel and hospitality industry generated $17.3 billion in revenue in 2021, which is the highest ever.

VISIT FLORIDA CEO and President Dana Young said the tourism numbers exceeded 2019’s numbers.

“We are thrilled to cap off an incredible year with more record-breaking success for Florida’s tourism industry,” said Young. “Overall visitation not only exceeded 2019’s for the second quarter in a row, but domestically reached the highest point in our state’s history. We also saw a significant rebound in international travel, including record visitation from Colombia that has made it now Florida’s No. 1 international origin market. VISIT FLORIDA’s marketing continues to drive results on behalf of Florida’s tourism economy, and we are looking forward to taking this success to new heights in 2022 and beyond.”

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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at The Florida Capital Star and The Star News Network. Follow Grant on Twitter and direct message tips.



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