Off to London for the World Travel Market

I’m heading to London today to promote our great city to hundreds of people and tour companies at the World Travel Market, the leading global event for the travel industry.

The Winter Park Chamber is partnering with VISIT FLORIDA, which has been attending the show for 25 years and has secured a top location for touching the most potential visitors. Thanks to Visit Florida’s offer of a discounted rate to attend, we have this amazing global outreach opportunity.

We couldn’t be more excited at the enthusiasm of our stakeholders and sponsors who are supporting this outreach. While we’ve kept our budget small, we expect great success. I thank not only those who have enthusiastically encouraged this outreach, but also all of you who help make our city the attraction it is.

We’re promoting “Old World Charm In The Sun” to an audience we believe will welcome the chance to get away from the gray days of London to bask in our sunshine and ambience.

The London market is the perfect place to attract those tourists we want here – visitors that fit the size and scale of our community while creating the least infrastructure impact. We’re not looking for busloads of tourists in search of T-shirt shops. That’s not who we are.

When you consider the Winter Park Chamber’s key roles of community advocacy and economic development, it’s important for us to look for tourism opportunities that fit. It’s about finding those precise tourists we want to attract over and over, tourists who after they visit us once will say:

  • I want to come back to look at colleges for my kids.
  • I want to come back for elective surgery.
  • I want to come back and buy a vacation home.
  • I want to come back and start a business here.

In other words, we want visitors who will not only spend money in our community but ultimately invest in our community.

We’ve already learned from surveys at our Welcome Center that the 53 percent of our international visitors are from the United Kingdom. So we know the interest is there. Now we can’t wait to build on that clearly established base.

I want to thank our sponsors in this venture:  The Alfond Inn, Bach Festival Society, the Winter Park History Museum, Morse Museum, Park Avenue Merchants Association, Polasek Museum and Sculpture Gardens, and the City of Winter Park and its Arts and Culture Subcommittee.

If you’re interested in seeing more of our journey, follow us on Instagram and view our stories, and like our page on Facebook.


Betsy Gardner Eckbert

President/CEO, Winter Park Chamber of Commerce

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