Last updated: 03:20 PM ET, Thu May 07 2015

USTA Reports Record Participation in 2015 National Travel and Tourism Week

Destination & Tourism | U.S. Travel Association | Patrick Clarke | May 07, 2015

USTA Reports Record Participation in 2015 National Travel and Tourism Week

The 32nd annual National Travel and Tourism Week kicked off earlier this month and continues through Sunday. 

But compared to celebrations of years past, 2015's salute to the travel and tourism industry has seen record participation, acccording to the U.S. Travel Association, which reported on Thursday that more than 400 U.S. cities planned major events in honor of NTTW.

Some examples of these events include Visit Orlando's luncheon featuring famous airline pilot "Sully" Sullenberger and Nashville's tourism bureau's "Visit Music City" luncheon.

Celebrations like these and other related offerings began this past Saturday and will continue across the U.S. through Mother's Day weekend. Tuesday marked U.S. Travel Rally Day, in which industry professionals were encouraged to wear the color red in show of support. 

This year's theme is "Travel is...," with the USTA encouraging people to fill in the blank. 

"Travel is jobs. Travel is growth. Travel is creating memories with family. But most of all, travel is personal, and we've been thrilled to see how folks have embraced this year's theme and filled in the blank with benefits of travel that we didn't even think of," said USTA president and CEO Roger Dow in a statement. 

"NTTW is an opportunity for travel stakeholders to speak firsthand to their local elected officials about the importance of travel. And ultimately, both because travel is such a universal enterprise and it creates profound economic impact in every corner of the country, everyone's a travel stakeholder," added Dow.

As of the latest figures, the industry's overall impact on the economy remains massive, as it generated $2.1 trillion in economic activity last year. Travelers combined to spend close to $928 billion on travel in 2014. 

What's more, as many as 15 million U.S. jobs are tied to the industry. 

Travelers and industry professionals alike can participate in NTTW and join the ongoing celebration on social media websites like Twitter by using the hashtag #NTTW2015. 


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