The meeting industry makes up a substantial amount of Salt Lake City’s visitor economy and has been one of the hardest-hit sectors by COVID-19; however, through the state's “Meet In Utah” program—which offered financial incentives to meetings that contracted events by December 30, 2020, to be held in 2021—Visit Salt Lake (VSL) booked 30 events that will generate nearly 28,000 room nights this year.
Funded by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development through the Utah Office of Tourism, the "Meet In Utah" campaign was a statewide initiative to assist in the meeting industry’s recovery for destinations with a convention center, including Davis County, Kanab, Logan, Ogden, St. George, Utah Valley, Vernal, and Salt Lake. The breadth of the program underscores the state’s interagency cooperation and recognizes the impact meetings and conventions have on Utah’s visitor economy.
“The pandemic hit the visitor economy hard, particularly the meeting and convention sector,” said Mark White, Visit Salt Lakes’ vice president of sales and services in a press statement. “Fortunately, the Utah Office of Tourism was keenly aware of that reality and, in response, provided grants to Visit Salt Lake and other DMOs throughout the state to assist our efforts in booking short-term meeting business. Those funds enabled us to book 30 events into the latter half of 2021 that would not have occurred otherwise.”
Despite the devastating impact COVID-19 has had on the hospitality industry, VSL’s sales team booked 747,852 room nights in 2020 through future meetings, conventions, and events, representing the organization’s third-best year ever.
For more information, visit www.visitsaltlake.com.