Governor Lamont Announces Connecticut Tourism Attracting Record Revenues and National Press Attention
State Looking to Continue Building on the Momentum for Summer 2023
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today highlighted the recent release of data showing the tangible return on investment to promote Connecticut with an all-season advertising campaign designed to showcase the state as a more vibrant, dynamic, and inclusive tourism destination. Not only is the state attracting more visitor spending than ever for tourism-related businesses, but Connecticut is also attracting more accolades than ever from some of the world’s top media outlets.
An independent study from tourism research leader Tourism Economics reports that tourism now drives $17 billion in annual business sales for an array of tourism-related businesses across every region of Connecticut. That’s a new state record for visitor spending – which makes Connecticut a regional outperformer, as well.
Another independent study of North American travel from Arrivalist also ranks Connecticut number one in the nation for increased growth in overnight road trips over the past year.
Continuing for this summer, the robust “Find Your Vibe” marketing and PR campaign is helping to drive these results. First stop for many of those interested in visiting Connecticut is the state’s official tourism website. Over the last year, CTvisit.com saw a record 7.1 million website visits. According to third-party website traffic measurement company SEMrush, CTvisit.com ranks among the top five state tourism sites in the nation for both traffic and engagement, right alongside major tourism destinations like Florida and Hawaii.
Leading media outlets are also taking notice of Connecticut’s emergence as a world-class destination. Just a few recent press stories put Connecticut cities, towns, restaurants, hotels, attractions, and airports in the national spotlight:
- The New York Times recently featured New Haven as one of the top places to go in 2023. (link)
- USA Today 10Best ranked Mystic the #4 top summer vacation destination for 2023. (link)
- Bloomberg called Mystic a “chef’s paradise.” (link)
- Passport Magazine, one of the premiere LGBTQ+ travel publications, called Connecticut “one of the country’s most inspiring destinations.” (link)
- Condé Nast Traveler reported that its readers voted Bradley International Airport the second-best airport in the nation in 2022. Additionally, this year’s poll (now running) includes a total of 35 Connecticut hotels, resorts, spas, and restaurants in the nominations. (link)
- The Daily Meal even proclaimed Connecticut home to the number one pizza in America — for four consecutive years. (link)
“It’s about time Connecticut’s tourism gets the national attention it deserves,” Governor Lamont said. “Our state is an incredible place to visit, and an even better place to live. The rest of the world is finally beginning to see Connecticut as we are – vibrant, kinetic, and inclusive. As a destination, we have everything – natural beauty, cultural attractions, amazing places to eat, and unique places to stay. The unsung heroes behind this momentum are the incredibly hard-working people from the tourism industry, as well as our state agencies, and the many Connecticut residents who welcome visitors to our state every day. They’re doing Connecticut proud.”
“There’s nothing like summer in Connecticut,” Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz said. “Whether you are looking to relax at the beach, take a hike in one of our stunning state parks, cool off at a museum, or enjoy an amazing place to eat, we have it all. The state’s recent accolades in tourism are made possible by our hard-working state agencies, our amazing business owners, and our fantastic residents. So, if you’re planning a day trip or searching for a summer destination, come see what Connecticut has to offer.”
“Connecticut is poised to have its biggest summer tourism season yet, and rightfully so,” Alexandra Daum, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, said. “We have all the summer favorites, from beautiful beaches and fantastic ice cream to buttered lobster rolls and cool cultural hot spots in our cities. This is a place that defies expectations where everyone can find their vibe and something they love. The proof is in our website traffic and engagement numbers on CTvisit.com, which show the world that despite being a small New England state, we punch well above our weight class with the likes of traditional tourism states like Florida and Hawaii.”
“Connecticut’s outdoor recreation economy has grown considerably in the last few years as demand for outdoor recreation has increased significantly since the pandemic, with a recent analysis from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis showing that the state’s outdoor recreation economy grew 20% from 2020 to 2021, generating nearly $4 billion in value added and more than 44,000 jobs for the state,” Katie Dykes, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, said. “This increase is attributable to the many outstanding outdoor recreation opportunities we have in Connecticut, including Connecticut State Parks – collectively one of the state’s largest tourism destinations, welcoming 17 million visitors last year. That’s why we’ve invested historic levels of funding in restoring our state parks, connected our beach parks to New York City through public transportation, and continue to invest in providing park access, building and improving trails, improving access for boating and fishing, and so much more. Come see why Connecticut is a great place to play in the outdoors.”
To learn more about all the great things there are to see and do in Connecticut, visit CTvisit.com.