No surprise here! SWFL tourism flourishes.

    No surprise here! SWFL tourism flourishes.

    Apr 26, 2018

    Old Man Winter provided a nice kick off to the 2018 first quarter tourism statistics.

    Collier County showed year over year increases for paid lodging with occupancy increasing 7.9%. Visitor and total economic impact from tourism increased almost 5% over January 2017 as reported by the Naples, Marco Island, Everglades Convention and Visitors Bureau data.

    Lee County demonstrated the same robust start. Lee County lodgings managers reported that reservations for the first quarter of 2018 were significantly stronger than last winter's high season. Even though the county offered two new hotels in 2017, TownePlace at Coconut Point and Drury Inn at Gulf Coast Town Center, it still noted year-over increases in room demand by 4% .

    The majority of visitors are from the U.S. seeking a warmer climate for an extended stay or just a week's break from the winter temperatures. Southwest Florida delivered and offered the bluest skies, sunny days, great golf courses, pristine beaches, shopping and culinary delights!

    Germany, Canada and the UK continue to be on top of the list of countries seeking out Southwest Florida. With airlines expanding their operations to Southwest Florida, we can expect those visitors to continue their journeys to our area. German tourism was down a bit this first quarter due to lack of non-stop flights. However, with the introduction of EuroWings to Southwest Florida International Airport this May, we should see an increase in German visitors to our area.