09 July 2013

New York tourism sees record growth

Despite a still struggling economy, America's most famous city continues to thrive with international visitors up over 50% in the last six years alone.

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New York's tourism industry has seen more than 50% growth in the past six years.

New York City welcomed an incredible 11 million international visitors last year, a 52% increase compared to just six years ago, according to the latest official figures released by the NYC & Company this week.

International tourism in the US grew relatively poorly in the 2000s, in large part due to increased security in the wake of the September 11th terrorism attacks but the Obama administration has made significant efforts to attract more international visitors in recent years.

"Tourism's robust growth since 2006 is no accident, it was the result of an innovative model and deliberate strategy to target emerging international markets and promote the diversity of tourism activities across all five boroughs [of New York City]," said Emily Rafferty, chair of NYC & Company.

The United States' economy has struggled with its recovery since the Global Financial Crisis, making New York's $9.3 billion (£6.3 billion) contribution in taxes, as well as the 78,000 jobs, have been essential to helping the economy recover.

Ms Rafferty said the city's tourism industry would continue to encourage growth, with plans in place to boost overall arrivals a further 6% within the next two years, regardless of who wins the upcoming mayoral elections.

"The industry will be looking for continued investment and support from the next [mayoral] administration."

The American Visa Bureau is an independent migration consultancy specialising in helping people from Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries make their ESTA application.

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