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Business Observer Monday, Feb. 10, 2020 7 months ago

Area enjoys record-setting tourism revenues as peak season gets under way

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Hillsborough County collected $3.38 million in bed taxes in January.

TAMPA — Tourism revenue for Tampa and Hillsborough County reached historic highs in January as the area’s bed tax collections surpassed $3 million for the first time.

According to a press release issued by Visit Tampa Bay, a destination marketing agency, Hillsborough County took in $3.38 million in tourist development funds, also known as bed taxes, last month. That number represents a 27.7% increase over January 2018, which had held the record for bed tax revenue.

“January isn’t just the start of the year, it’s the beginning of Tampa Bay’s peak visitation months,” states Santiago Corrada, president and CEO of Visit Tampa Bay, in the release. “Annual events like the Outback Bowl, Gasparilla season and large conventions including the Florida Music Education Association Annual Conference kick off the year, bringing in tens of thousands of visitors every January.”

During the first four months of Visit Tampa Bay’s fiscal year, which runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, Hillsborough County has collected more than $12.3 million in tourist development funds, the release states. That repreents a 24.7% increase over the same four-month period in 2018-19.

“With 1,000 new hotels rooms recently completed, and another 2,000 on the horizon, 2020 is looking to be another strong year for tourism and visitation in Tampa Bay,” Corrada states in the release. “The multibillion-dollar developments taking place throughout the county will transform the area and ensure we are prepared to host larger national events like NCAA National Championships, Wrestlemania and the Super Bowl for years to come.”

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