[Tallahassee, Fla.] Today, Gov. Ron DeSantis unveiled his budget, The Bold Vision for a Brighter Future, recommending $76 million for VISIT FLORIDA. This amount keeps the funding at its current level and underscores the importance of the tourism industry to our state’s economy. VISIT FLORIDA serves as the official tourism marketing organization for the state and targets potential visitors from out-of-state as well as out-of-country through a variety of partnerships and programs.
“We are proud to see that Gov. DeSantis recognizes the importance of tourism in Florida and has chosen to recommend we continue to support VISIT FLORIDA,” said Carol Dover, CEO / President of the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association. “The number of visitors to our great state has risen as a result of the marketing efforts of VISIT FLORIDA, and I am excited to see how this continuation of support will positively impact our state’s economy.”
Regarding his budget recommendation, Gov. DeSantis said, “While Florida continues to grow and diversify economically, it is undeniable that the tourism industry is one of our state’s economic foundations. Florida’s prosperity in recent years is due in no small part to the economic activity generated by over 100 million visitors to Florida every year. Although our state has much to offer, we cannot rest on our laurels and hope that our tourism success will continue without a strong state-level marketing program.
“The Bold Vision for a Brighter Future budget recommends $76 million for VISIT FLORIDA, the same amount as in the current fiscal year. VISIT FLORIDA serves as the state’s official tourism marketing corporation and Florida’s official source for travel planning to visitors across the globe. The organization, along with its partners, facilitates tourism industry participation through various domestic and international marketing opportunities (e.g. domestic and international trade shows and consumer shows and media missions) to top global visitor markets. VISIT FLORIDA also works closely with tour operators, travel agents and event planners as part of its marketing activities. In addition, the state’s five Official Welcome Centers are staffed by VISIT FLORIDA. At this proposed level of funding, we can be assured that Florida will set another record for the number of tourists visiting our state.”
In addition to VISIT FLORIDA’s domestic and international marketing efforts, the organization works to drive visitors to areas that have been negatively impacted by various disasters. Programs such as Red Tide Recover and Hurricane Recovery Support offer complimentary brochure distribution at the state’s welcome centers, marketing partnerships and exposure on the VISIT FLORIDA website. Designed to help areas quickly recover in the wake of a disaster, these programs benefit tourism-related businesses like hotels and restaurants.
For more full details of Gov. DeSantis’ Bold Vision for a Brighter Future budget, click here.