Atlanta Draws 40 Million Visitors in 2012

Atlanta 40 Million Press Conference
Atlanta 40 Million Press Conference

Atlanta set a record for visitation in a single year, welcoming 40.4 million visitors in 2012. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau President & CEO William Pate announced the milestone at a press conference today in Atlanta’s City Hall.

Visitation has increased by 28 percent over the past decade alongside more than $5 billion in new attractions, restaurants and hotels in the same timeframe. The increase has pushed Atlanta to become one of the top destinations for travelers from across the U.S.

“Today is an historic day for Atlanta and its hospitality industry and confirms Atlanta’s position as one of the country’s top travel destinations,” said William Pate, president and CEO of Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.  

Atlanta’s hospitality industry looks to continue this growth by opening another $2.5 billion in development by 2017. The National Center for Civil and Human Rights, College Football Hall of Fame and Atlanta Streetcar are all slated to open in downtown Atlanta during 2014, further bolstering the city’s offering to tourists. Ponce City Market and Buckhead Atlanta will also bring two unique shopping experiences to the city and continued progress on the BeltLine will offer new pathways to explore the city.  In 2017, the Atlanta Falcons will move to a new, retractable roof stadium that will be used to support the city’s thriving meetings and events industry.

“Tourism is one of the top economic drivers for Atlanta and it’s an industry that continues to thrive,” said Mayor Kasim Reed.  “We are proud that Atlanta welcomed more than 40 million visitors in 2012 and with all of the exciting development occurring in our city, this number will continue to grow.”

To mark the 40 million visitor milestone, Atlanta has launched a social media campaign asking residents of metro Atlanta to say thank you by using the hashtag #ATLthanks. The city hopes to reach 40 million people with a simple message—thank you for visiting.

Domestic visitation estimates are produced by D.K. Shifflet & Associates Ltd., a travel research firm, specializing in consumer-based travel data on U.S. residents and their travel.

Celebrating 100 years of hospitality, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau is a private, nonprofit organization created to favorably impact the Atlanta economy through conventions and tourism.