New York City declared a $30 million advertising campaign last Wednesday which was designed to encourage tourists back to the city and revive economy that was severely hit by the coronavirus pandemic.
Mayor Bill de Blasio had described the marketing stint and dubbed it as “NYC Reawakens”. This campaign is set to launch in June, as the city’s “largest-ever” drive to promote tourism.
“We need to let people know we’re open for business,” he confidently told reporters. “It’s safe, come here. Join this amazing moment. Come to this city that’s been so heroic during this crisis,” De Blasio added as he answers the hot questions from the interview.
New York is progressively reopening on the back of a strong inoculation rollout that is keeping COVID-19 positivity rates in the city at around five percent.
Sports teams, including the New York Yankees and New York Knicks, are now playing in front of their fans again while museums, restaurants and some shows are now operational with reduced capacities. Broadway, however, is still close until September, although officials haven’t ruled out an earlier return.
The pandemic has left the business areas really deserted, and it caused thousands of shops, restaurants, bars and hotels report bankruptcy. Also, crime and homelessness have also increased, which had reminded some old locals of the gritty, and sometimes dangerous, New York way back in 1970s and ’80s.
The return of tourists is seen as key to the restoration of the city. Last year, only 22 million tourists had visited the city and this is really low compared to the 67 million tourists in 2019. These statistics are given by the city’s tourism organization, NYC & Company.
The government is looking forward to seeing 36.4 million visitors this year, and they had predicted that it will be in 2024 that numbers exceed their pre-pandemic level.
Due to the international travel restrictions and bans, the “NYC Reawakens” program will initially target Americans, before expanding globally once the pandemic controls allow it. De Blasio also said that he had no doubt that there would 400,000 jobs linked to New York City tourism before the pandemic “will come back.”
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