On May 2nd and 6th, as part of a larger celebration of National Travel & Tourism Week, the Johnston County Visitors Bureau (JCVB) and various partners will visit the North Carolina welcome centers on I-95. The list of participating partners from JoCo includes hotels, entertainment attractions, and more! The group will greet I-95 travelers through-out the day, working to increase awareness of JoCo as a destination, providing giveaways, and even giving out samples. 

The event is part of the 39th annual National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW), happening May 1st through 7th, which unites communities across the country to celebrate how travel matters to American jobs, economic growth and personal well-being. This year’s theme, ‘Future of Travel’, elevates how the travel industry can restore the workforce, help communities recover, foster sustainability, usher in new innovations, and reconnect travelers in the U.S. and around the world.

National Travel Tourism Week Graphic 2022

“The JCVB is planning for a future that will strengthen JoCo’s tourism industry and economy,” said Donna Bailey-Taylor, President/CEO of the Johnston County Visitors Bureau. “Through this event and NTTW in general, we are celebrating travel’s powerful impact on our community. We’re calling on everyone—from elected officials to all of our local friends and neighbors—to join us in saluting this important industry.”

Travel is powerful for cities and states, and JoCo is no exception. In spite of the devastating impact of the COVID pandemic, in 2020 visitors to the county spent $181.9 million, which equals $498,356 a day with tourism related businesses in the county. The current growth of tourism in the county through the first quarter of 2022, indicates a return to the spending levels of 2019. 

The JCVB works annually with over 800 travel and tourism partners in the county to promote JoCo and its towns as a destination to travelers, particularly those along I-95. The Welcome Center visits during NTTW help remind travelers, welcome center staff, and even participating partners, how vital travel is to Johnston County’s communities. 

The Power of Travel Graphic from the US Travel PowerPoint

“By participating in National Travel & Tourism Week, we increase visitor awareness of Johnston County’s brand and the many reasons to visit and celebrate tourism,” said Taylor, “but we also use it as a tool to educate on how much travel matters as an economic driver at the national, state, and local level.” 

The mission of the Johnston County Visitors Bureau is the marketing and development of the destination’s brand experiences to targeted visitor markets for economic growth and quality of place. The Johnston County Visitors Bureau is 100% funded by the 3% room tax paid by visitors staying in local accommodations.  No locally paid property tax or fees in the county are included in the Visitors Bureau’s budget. Over 50% of the occupancy tax goes to direct and in-direct marketing expenses which include billboards, other paid advertising, trade shows, publicity and digital marketing campaigns. 

To learn more about the Johnston County Visitors Bureau and tourism in the county, visit the web site, www.johnstoncountync.org/about or call 919-989-8687.