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Mayors Bloomberg and Johnson renew Tourism Partnership between New York City and London

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg joined London Mayor Boris Johnson at London City Hall to sign a renewal of the tourism partnership between New York City and London to boost travel between the two destinations. Originally formed in 2009, the partnership represents a commitment by both cities to their respective tourism industries and acknowledgment of the enormous economic impact of the leisure and hospitality sectors.

As in the past, NYC & Company and London & Partners—the respective tourism and marketing organizations for each city—have agreed to exchange outdoor media advertising space and share best marketing and tourism practices. The two organizations have also committed to developing a cultural promotion program to encourage visitors to explore large and small institutions throughout both cities, and to facilitating dialogue between the organizations themselves. Additionally, in honor of the agreement, official promotional airline partner British Airways created two special travel packages to help bolster bookings between the two destinations during the winter need period. 

“Mayor Johnson and I have long championed the need for municipal governments to diversify their economies and maximize opportunities to support small businesses and cultural institutions,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Encouraging tourism development was one of our first initiatives together, and renewing and enhancing those commitments will be pivotal to the continued vibrancy of these two world-class cities.”

“As great world cities for culture, London and New York offer the visitor an extraordinary number of attractions, so I am delighted to be renewing this important partnership,” said Mayor Johnson. “Let’s shout it out loud: London loves New York and New York loves London, and as big, bold cities, tourism has a vital part to play in the prosperity of each. As the global economy emerges from this economic downturn, our goal is to build on the mighty reputations of each as preeminent destinations for culture-hungry visitors.”

Under the yearlong tourism agreement, New York City will exchange outdoor bus-shelter advertising assets to allow London to run promotions throughout New York City in 2014. In return, London will exchange digital and outdoor media space to help New York City enhance its presence in one of its most important markets. Each city’s contribution is valued at over $320,000. Also, as part of the agreement, NYC & Company and London & Partners will share best practices in their endeavors to boost tourism and develop a cultural program to be announced in early 2014. 

“New York City tourism is on pace for a record-breaking 2013 and today’s agreement helps set the stage for us to carry this momentum into next year,” said NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta. “The UK is our top overseas market, and reaching this audience is a key priority for us as we look to reach 55 million visitors by 2015. We are particularly excited to explore ways in which we can support our cultural institutions—both big and small—through creative marketing and tourism programs.”

“London has so many rich cultural offerings, and our capital is experiencing record tourism figures this year,” said London & Partners Chief Executive Officer Gordon Innes. “American visitors have always been a key target market, and we’re delighted that both cities continue to recognize the mutual support we can offer each other.”

In celebration of this announcement, British Airways created special travel packages between New York City and London. Beginning today through October 2, 2013, a three-night break to New York City is starting from £549 per person (including flights from Heathrow and three-star accommodation) based on travel from January 7 to February 5, 2014. And from today through December 31, 2013, a four-night stay in London is starting from $969 per person (including return flights from Heathrow and four-star accommodation with breakfast) for travel from December 1, 2013 through to February 28, 2014. Travelers to New York City should visit and for travel to London they can go to

"We are delighted to be the airline partner,” said John McDonald, British Airways' Vice President Marketing Americas.  “These are two very important markets for us and we've announced a great air and hotel package to encourage more visitors to experience the best London and New York City has to offer.”

Last year, New York City welcomed 1,033,000 visitors from the UK and forecasts show a projected 2.5% increase for 2013. In fact, the UK is not only the top overseas origin market for New York City but for the United States as a whole, with London’s Heathrow Airport accounting for over 14 million passengers to the United States, tops for all foreign airports. Conversely, Americans made almost 1.8 million visits to London last year, and the United States remains London’s number one market for international visitors.

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