Driven almost entirely by American travelers, Florida’s tourism numbers broke a record in the first quarter of 2018 (January – March) with 33.2 million visitors – the largest quarter for visitation ever.
A booming U.S. economy and relatively low fuel prices have resulted in record-breaking domestic travel to the Sunshine State with 29.1 million domestic visitors in the first quarter of 2018 , an 8.5% increase over the same period last year.
“I am proud to announce that Florida set an all-time record by welcoming over 33 million visitors to our state during the first quarter of 2018,” said Florida Governor Rick Scott. “This historic tourism number represents a 7.4 percent increase over last year and demonstrates the momentum that our state has built. Since December 2010, Florida has created more than 1.5 million jobs, and a large part of this growth is because of the incredible success of our state’s tourism industry.”
1.4 million Canadians came to Florida in the first quarter of 2018 , an increase of 2.5 percent from Q1 2017.
Excluding Canadians, foreign travel to Florida declined -0.7% in the first quarter.
Total enplanements at Florida’s 18 major airports in the first quarter of 2018 increased 7.6 percent over the same period the previous year, with Orlando International Airport reporting the most enplaned passengers at nearly 6 million.
Of total enplanements, 80.1 percent were domestic, up 1.4 million compared to Q1 of last year.
The number of rooms sold and the hotel occupancy rate in Q1 2018 also grew by 3.3 percent and 1.9 percent respectively.