Published on Friday, May 10, 2019

Orlando reports record year

It was another big year for Orlando tourism, with the destination welcoming 75 million visitor arrivals in 2018.

Visit Orlando said the figures solidify its status as the most visited destination in the country, ahead of New York, Las Vegas and Los Angeles.

"We saw strong gains from all of our core countries, particularly from Latin America. This success is a testament to the special appeal of our destination that continues to grow and evolve, as well as our strong commitment to strategic marketing initiatives," said Visit Orlando president and CEO George Aguel.

Of course, being the world's theme park capital helps.

Orlando had 68.5 million domestic visitors, an annual increase of 4.1%, and 6.5 million international visitors, also up by more than 5%.

International visitor growth was driven by Latin America, and specifically Brazil and Mexico.

Orlando now has more than 120,000 hotel rooms, which is the second highest in the US after Las Vegas.

There have been several high-profile additions at Orlando theme parks at Disney, Universal and SeaWorld with more to come.

Disney World is opening its Star Wars attraction this summer, Universal Orlando opens a new Harry Potter-themed ride, and SeaWorld just launched Sesame Street land.

"We think it will help us carry over in 2020. A lot of these things start to kick in the following year," Aguel said.

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