Case Study: San Diego Tourism Authority

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San Diego Tourism Authority

Tourism is the third-largest economic driver in San Diego - generating $17.9 billion in regional economic impact, contributing to more than $895 million in transient occupancy taxes, sales taxes and property taxes to government entities, and supporting 194,000 tourism-related jobs in the County.

At the center of this dynamic environment is the San Diego Tourism Authority (SDTA), the sales and marketing engine focused on promoting and marketing San Diego as a preferred vacation and meeting destination for leisure and business travelers from around the world. SDTA is the largest recipient of SDTMD funding, receiving approximately 95 percent of available funds for tourism marketing and promotion. SDTA programs are crucial to gaining market share and showcasing San Diego as a world-class tourism location.

Formerly known as the San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau (ConVis), SDTA is nimble in the marketplace, and as market conditions shift, it updates its programs accordingly to best capitalize on market opportunities, and to maximize ROI, which in FY 2018 was 23.2:1, resulting in hotel room night revenue in the City of San Diego of over $767 million; more than 4.5 million room nights; and a significant increase in the amount of transient occupancy taxes (TOT) collected — from $221 million in FY 2017 to $232 million last year.

Key Highlights FY18:

  • SDTA’s marketing activities were successful in attracting over 35 million visitors to the City and generating $10.8 billion in total visitor spending.
  • SDTA’s work has helped make San Diego a Top 5 travel destination for U.S. residents and the 11th most visited city for overseas visitors.
  • SDTA campaigns influenced 4.5 million room nights at TMD hotels and $767 million in hotel room revenue.
  • The City of San Diego experienced strong demand for hotel room nights, which averaged 79.7 percent occupancy, as a result of SDTA programs.