CLEARWATER, Fla. – Florida is on a hot streak, with Governor Rick Scott announcing that the state has broken another record for visitor arrivals. During the first quarter of the year, Florida welcomed its highest number of visitors – 29.8 million, to be exact – which is an increase of 4.8% over the same period last year and exceeds the previous high of 28.5 million in the first quarter of 2015.
The news may not come as a surprise to state officials; back in March, Governor Scott signed the Florida First budget that saw an investment of US$76 million for VISIT FLORIDA to attract even more tourists to the Sunshine State.
“I’m thrilled that Florida continues to break records in the amount of tourists visiting our state. Nearly 30 million visitors have enjoyed our beautiful beaches and attractions so far this year, and a record high of more than 1.2 million Floridians are employed in the tourism industry, which is great news. Last year, we exceeded our goal of an historic 105 million visitors because of Florida’s unique national treasures, and I look forward to smashing our record again this year by welcoming 115 million visitors to the Sunshine State.”
VISIT FLORIDA estimates that a record 25.6 million domestic visitors travelled to Florida in the first quarter of 2016, which is a 6.6% increase over the same period last year. Total enplanements at Florida’s 18 major airports in Q1 2016 equalled 22.3 million, an increase of 1.5 million (or 7%) over the same period last year.