Miami and New York Tourism officials are teaming up with American Airlines to swap tourists and get more people flying again by offering prospective passengers a special $79 each way fare special, along with other incentives.
“Traveling the country has long been a tradition for many Americans, but with the recent economic downturn, we have seen less activity,” said George Fertitta, CEO of NY & Company, New York City’s official tourism organization and board member of the U.S. Corporation for Travel Promotion. Therefore, New York City and American Airlines, along with Miami and other cities, are launching the “Live More Tour,” to remind Americans of the joy of air travel, he said.
“We are going on to Chicago and Los Angeles and there will be more cities to come as we seek to provide customers with incentives to travel between our country’s iconic cities,” Fertitta said. But, he added, the program was kicked off here because, he noted, “there are ties between Miami and New York City that are probably the most extraordinary ties between any two cities in the U.S.”
Fertitta made his comments at the press conference, which was held at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami.
Also at the press conference, William D. Talbert III, president and CEO of the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau agreed with his tourism colleague. “Despite the global meltdown, the two most successful destinations in the U.S. today remain Miami and New York City,” he said. The connection between the two cities is unique because many Miami residents originally moved here from New York and maintain their family ties.
Also at the press conference, Marilyn DeVoe, vice president of American Airlines, the campaign’s third major partner, outlined the special fare deal.
American is offering a special $79 each way fare between Miami or Fort Lauderdale and any of the New York City area’s three major airports. The special fare, which is available only between now and Thursday, Oct. 21, applies only to travel between Jan. 5 and Feb. 25, 2001. Blackout dates apply, and there is a $150 change fee, as well as airport fees. New Yorkers heading to Miami or Fort Lauderdale are privy to the same reciprocal deal. Seats are limited, she said.
According to Talbert and Fertitta, though, this new partnership between the two cities is designed to extend far beyond the short-term fare deal.
Throughout the coming year, the two cities will join in cross-promoting each other, with New York offering special deals that involve discounts for restaurants, hotels, Broadway and off-Broadway plays. In exchange, New York visitors here will be encouraged to participate in special Miami promotions as well. In addition, the tourism marketing teams from both cities will work together to come up with mutually beneficial promotions designed to “fill the gap” between slow tourism seasons in both places, Talbert said.
“Even in our high season in winter, we have 10,000 hotel room vacancies, and if these can be filled by these incremental travelers, that is all to the good,” said he added.
“While the joy of travel has been dampened by the economy, it is important to remember that travel is the driving force in creating jobs,” said Fertitta. “Travel is the best opportunity we have to get this economy going, and we are all hoping that, with any luck at all, this campaign will have a tremendous impact.”
More info: NYC “Live More Tour” Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, American Airlines