New York has been a popular vacation destination for decades but in 2016, it drew a record-breaking 60.3 million visitors. It is the first time a city has attracted more than 60 million people. It is estimated that 47.6 million are from within the U.S. and 12.6 million are international visitors.
Last year, the city attracted an impressive 58.5 million visitors. The forecast for 2016 was 59.7 million people. By the end of the year, the city projects that a total 60.3 million people will have visited New York. Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement:
“Not only has 2016 brought the largest number of visitors in New York City history, but it also caps off seven years of strong tourism growth and 15,000 more jobs for New Yorkers.”
The increase in visitors is said to be responsible for the additional 15,000 jobs in New York. In total, the travel and tourism business sustains over 375,000 jobs. Hotel demand also had a massive increase. In 2016, visitors booked 34.9 million room stays, which is up from last year’s 1.2 million.
From Thanksgiving until New Year’s, New York sees approximately 5 million visitors. There are several holiday attractions in the city that draw more visitors at the end of the year. Some popular attractions include the annual Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes, the Macy’s Christmas window displays, the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and many more.
While New York natives sometimes express frustration over the rising congestion, city officials seem pleased. Mayor de Blasio, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and destination marketing organization NYC & Co. made the announcement on Monday. Mark-Viverito said:
“We are very excited to host a record high number of visitors who are interested in learning about the vibrant culture of our wonderful city. Visiting New York City can mean the trip of a lifetime, and we want to offer everyone the opportunity to truly have the full experience.”
Featured Image via Flickr/kevdia