Convention and visitor industry remains strong in Oklahoma City
The Oklahoma City Convention and Visitors Bureau, a division of the Chamber, concluded another successful fiscal year on June 30. According to the CVB’s recently released Annual Report, the Oklahoma City convention and visitor industry continues to see growth and success in the wake of new additions to the Oklahoma City attraction market.
Between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2018, Oklahoma City exceeded $15 million in total hotel room taxes for the first time in the history of the CVB, an increase over FY17 by 7.5 percent. Comparing FY2018 with FY2017, room night demand from a broad mix of business increased by 8.36 percent, hotel revenue increased by 8.63 percent and hotel room supply grew citywide by 4.35 percent. These metrics far outpace those found in Oklahoma City’s competitive set of cities who compete for the same events, and only Austin added a larger percentage of rooms to its inventory.
The CVB team concluded FY18 with 379,255 definite room nights produced in the convention, sports, group tours and equine markets. The CVB also provided registration and servicing to 263 groups and 43 site visits to potential groups. Oklahoma City also hosted 710 motorcoach group tours during the fiscal year. The year-end economic impact for conventions and sports sales was $113,169,916.
The positive momentum of the convention and events industry comes on the heels of several big moments for Oklahoma City attractions. The Civic Center Music Hall celebrated their 80th season, Remington Park began their 30th year of business, and the Dodgers saw 13 players advance to the major leagues. Significant to the future of the industry was the groundbreaking of the MAPS 3 Convention Center in June, an event that made headlines in numerous meetings and events industry publications. The CVB capitalized on this momentum by launching a new meetings site, MeetinOKC.com, to continue to market Oklahoma City’s new facility as a prime location for conventions and meetings. Looking to the future, the CVB developed tentative business, or sales leads, for 421 groups for a total of 463,652 potential future room nights.
The CVB also marketed Oklahoma City as a visitor destination, hosting 47 travel writers and completing 231 media pitches and 83 story assists during the 2017 fiscal year. To support a positive visitor experience, the CVB held eight Certified Tourism Ambassador training events, resulting in 356 active CTA members in the Greater Oklahoma City metro area. Customer satisfaction surveys measuring Oklahoma City as a destination, the CVB as an organization and local industry partners averaged an overall satisfaction rating of 96 percent for the year.