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Visit San Antonio: Tourism Development, September 2020

Tourism staff continues to stay in touch with key accounts to share information on what is going on in San Antonio, as well as learn more about what is going in their market segment:

Airbnb

Based in San Francisco, Airbnb lets people list, find and rent short-term lodging in 65,000 cities and more than 191 countries across the globe. Airbnb is now valued at $31 billion and is also helping travelers explore the world outside their rentals through experiential experiences.  They have also just announced that they have confidentially filed a public listing proposal with the SEC.

Staff has been working with Airbnb since 2018, when it began negotiations with the city to require hosts to pay taxes. Fast forward to 2020: Airbnb hosts are paying taxes, COVID-19 hits and the company develops a “Rebuilding Together” program for destinations that includes unprecedented access from Airbnb to data and marketing. 

We are in the process of finalizing an agreement to work with Airbnb in the following areas:

  • Two email blasts to source markets identified by Visit San Antonio and the research provided.
  • Development of a destination landing page on Airbnb.
  • Upload a San Antonio virtual online experience.

This is a great start to increasing the visibility of our destination on the Airbnb site, as well as to with their consumer database.

Student Youth Market Tour and Travel Guide

Staff is in the process of developing a tour and travel guide specifically for Student Youth tour operators.  It will include information on what’s new, destination re-opening plans, and new ideas for itineraries.  Most importantly, it will be a resource for the tour operators looking for student group-friendly restaurants, attractions and hotels.  A memo was sent out to all partners interested in student youth groups, inviting them to provide information about their business, so that they can be added to the guide. For more information, please contact Alex Gonzales at alexgonzales@visitsanantonio.com.

Brand USA Global Marketplace Travel Week Europe

Staff will be attending Travel Week Europe, organized by Brand USA Global Marketplace, from Oct. 26 –30. Brand USA has put together a platform that will allow us to have a virtual booth and take one-on-one appointments.  This will be a great opportunity to meet with our clients in Europe to better understand what opportunities there are to promote the destination.  In addition, Brand USA will be using this virtual platform for shows in Mexico, Canada and Australia.  If you have any questions, please contact Dorah Benavidez at dorahbenavidez@visitsanantonio.com.

Expedia Summer Campaign

The Expedia Summer Campaign has been put on pause until we see a consistent decline of COVID-19 cases. Please keep in mind that this is a room-night campaign that is targeted throughout Texas and the touch states. If you are interested in participating, please reach out to the local Expedia market manager. Participation in this campaign is available and free to all area hotels.  Please contact dorahbenavidez@visitsanantonio.com for additional information. 

MasterCard

We have just completed our first video for the MasterCard virtual online experience. We went with the culinary angle and recruited Elizabeth Johnson from Pharm Table; she cooked quinoa tamales and nopalito salad. The Spanish Governor’s Palace was a great location for the cooking demonstration. Next steps are video edits and adding destination shots. There will be videos in English and with Spanish subtitles, both made available on Mastercard’s Mexico site.

In addition, we have had a follow-up conversation with regards to MasterCard Mexico and have begun to work on a MasterCard exclusive offer program. The Mexico office is in the process of identifying key partners that align with the Mexican National traveler. Once this is complete, we will reach out to these partners and discuss the development of an exclusive experience.

Mexico

The border restrictions were extended through Sept. 21.  Please keep in mind that the border restrictions do not apply to travel by air, train or sea.  Several airlines have resumed their flights to from Mexico to San Antonio.

In Air Service Development, AeroMexico, Volaris and Viva Aerobus have all resumed direct flights from Mexico to San Antonio:

  • Aero Mexico is flying once daily from D.F. To SAT
  • Volaris is flying twice a week to from Guadalajara to SAT and D.F. To SAT
  • Viva Aerobus is flying twice a week from Monterrey to SAT