On September 23, Visit Alexandria held its 2020 Annual Meeting virtually, broadcast live from The Westin Alexandria Old Town. The organization highlighted COVID-19 response programs and showcased the resilience of the community. Momentum from record-setting results during the first eight months of the fiscal year, July 2019 to February 2020, created a strong foundation for Alexandria’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, which has had a disproportionate impact on the hospitality and tourism industry.
In calendar year 2019, Alexandria garnered the highest-ever economic impact from travel. According to the Commonwealth of Virginia’s just-released 2019 Economic Impact of Domestic Travel on Virginia and Localities report, spending from destination market visitors coming from more than 50 miles away was $881 million, producing $28.6 million in local tax revenues for Alexandria. However, these 2019 figures do not account for the devastating impact that COVID-19 has had on the tourism industry.
Fiscal year 2021 programs include the promotion of hybrid meetings and micro weddings and the launch of virtual site tours and experiences. D.C.-regional marketing will include expanded Shop Small strategies to support independent boutiques during the holidays and the second iteration of Alexandria Restaurant Week To-Go in the late winter. A major Black history and travel initiative will increase Visit Alexandria’s capacity to tell an inclusive story of the city’s past and present, and includes a reimagined self-guided driving tour, major photo and video shoot and expanded PR strategies. Destination marketing will focus on a 3-hour drive radius encompassing Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware and the D.C. Metro, gradually expanding outward as health confidence improves.
Visit Alexandria closed the virtual event with a new video that highlights the resilience of the Alexandria community, featuring the innovation and adaptions of the city’s small businesses, hotels, health department and city government
View the full event video recording here, and the slides-only PDF here.
View the full press release for the event here.
View the “Tribute to the Resilience of the Alexandria Community” video here.
View the 2020 Annual Report here.