Lodging sales increase 5.1 percent compared to 2013, totaling $315 million

(Virginia Beach, Va., February 19, 2015) – The Virginia Beach tourism industry experienced a record year in 2014, according to information released from the City Treasurer’s Office. Actual tax receipts for the year show record-breaking increases in both lodging sales and restaurant sales for Virginia Beach’s travel and tourism industry.  Lodging sales increased 5.1 percent compared to 2013, totaling $315 million in the city.  

Figures from lodging sales include hotels, campgrounds, vacation rental homes and timeshare/condo rentals in Virginia Beach. “Not only are visitors spending the night in our city and eating in our restaurants, but the tourism industry also continues to add jobs and support the local economy,” said Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau Director James B. Ricketts.  “Hotels sales for January 2015 were strong also, and while we’re happy to see our business grow in 2014, we anticipate the industry to beat those records again this year.” Citywide restaurant sales in 2014 increased 3.6 percent compared to 2013, amounting to $1.1 billion.  The city’s restaurant sales have exceeded $1 billion for the past two years. In 2014, the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) promoted the city to visitors from various market segments, including year-round leisure travel, meetings and convention business, amateur sports events, and international travel.  Data maintained by the Virginia Beach Convention Sales & Marketing division shows that in 2014 the Sports Marketing team contracted an estimated 70 events, generating 106,684 estimated room nights.  Meetings & Conventions contracted an estimated 123 meetings, generating 42,933 estimated room nights.  According to data maintained by the Virginia Beach Convention Center, 351 total events were hosted in the 516,000-square-foot facility, of which 31 were secured in by the CVB. “Virginia Beach can look back at 2014 as a very successful year,” said Todd Bertka, vice president of convention sales and marketing.  “Groups of all sizes and from all ages continue to visit Virginia Beach during the shoulder season – from October to May – filling our hotel rooms and enjoying our facilities.  As we continue to upgrade our amenities to compete with other cities, we position ourselves to compete in a highly-fierce market to attract more visitors.” As a leading revenue generator in Virginia Beach, tourism is a driving force for the city’s economy, creating jobs and generating economic impact. In 2013, visitor spending for Virginia Beach reached a record $1.3 billion.  Local travel-supported jobs totaled 12,257 while local and state visitor-related tax revenues were over $108 million.  

For more information, view the 2014 CVB Annual Report online at http://bit.ly/1EtncJF.

Virginia Beach Reports a Record Year for Tourism in 2014 The Virginia Beach CVB is responsible for promoting year-round leisure travel, meetings and convention business, amateur sports events, and international travel to Virginia’s most populous city.  The source of tourism marketing is derived from the Tourism Advertising Program (TAP Fund). The TAP Fund was established in 1995 to provide additional funding for the city’s advertising and marketing program to foster and stimulate growth of tourism, and is funded by one cent of the hotel tax, half cent of the restaurant tax and one dollar flat tax per room night.