PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — Panama City Beach is in the middle of their typical off-season, but they are still expecting a strong showing of visitors in the area.
The city had back-to-back record-breaking tourism seasons in 2021.
At Tuesday’s Bay County Tourist Development Council meeting, leaders talked about how they plan to keep that momentum going into a historically slow time of the year.
The council reviewed past numbers of visitors to set new goals for this winter season.
“We were excited to see the data and the numbers that were presented [Tuesday] because it really reflects where we’ve been and some of the trends that were presented,” Vice President of Marketing for Visit Panama City Beach Jayna Leach said. “When you’re in the moment, you can’t quite predict what those are going to look like, but seeing the research, it really gives us the confidence that some of the marketing plans that we implemented and adjusted along the way, that they definitely worked for the destination.”
Leach said one of the biggest strategies to get more visitors into the area is to have a “robust marketing plan.”
“We learned a lot in the past couple of years, and we set our plan on a quarterly basis now so we can adjust as needed, and we also are targeting some new markets to get new visitors here, as well as our loyal repeat visitors,” she said.
One of the biggest magnets for visitors: events.
Their next event is the annual Mardi Gras Festival in February. Organizers plan to host a parade this year, and it will be the first time in two years since the pandemic forced them to cancel it.
“We just love promoting the events, it brings in new visitors to the destination, and it’s one thing that really sets Panama City Beach apart,” Leach said. “The past couple of years have been incredible for Panama City Beach, and so far, from everything that we’re hearing and seeing from our partners, it is a great winter season for us.”