Orlando saw a record-breaking year in 2011, becoming the first U.S. destination to welcome more than 55 million visitors. That’s an increase of 7.2 percent from 2010. Business and leisure travel accounted for 51.3 million visitors; international travelers for 3.8 million.
Visit Orlando, as the Orlando tourism bureau is called, saw the number of overnight convention and meeting business grow to 3.3 million, an increase of 2.7 percent. The tourism bureau began new marketing campaigns last year to attract more visitors during two typically slow periods: May to June and mid-August to September. Representatives attended a number of trade shows in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia to promote Orlando as a meeting destination.
Most of the city’s international visitors came from Canada, a number that topped 1 million in 2011.