As tourism season returns to Salem this year, city officials and local business owners are expressing enthusiasm to welcome back larger crowds as more travel reports are released. According to the 2021 Travel Trends Report by Expedia Group, almost half of the respondents are more likely to travel when a COVID-19 vaccine is widely available. The survey also revealed that 44% will take more trips in 2021 than 2020, with younger generations traveling the most overall. The April Travel Recovery Data Report from US Travel Association shows that more than seven in 10 American travelers (72%) are planning a summer vacation or getaway – up from 37% in 2020. Salem recently received a $622,922 grant from the federal Economic Development Administration to support businesses in the coming tourism season as they recover from the effects of the pandemic.
“The outlook for travel this year is very optimistic,” said Kate Fox, Executive Director of Destination Salem. “This is great news for Salem as the tourism industry supports many local jobs and produces revenue that keeps local businesses economically secure for the entire year. Prior to the pandemic, Salem tourism numbers had been steadily increasing since at least 2013. With Haunted Happenings again on the schedule, and vaccinations readily available, the city is planning for a busy summer and fall.”
Vini Kurti, a Salem resident who has owned and operated Adriatic Restaurant for nearly 11 years, looks forward to welcoming the tourists each year. “We love the tourists, we have a saying each year amongst the businesses owners, ‘they’re almost here, they’re almost here, ….they’re here!’,” said Kurti. “We look forward to entertaining and providing a memorable experience for tourists, just as we do for our local customers. The tourists are a part of our culture here in Salem.”
Denise Kent, another Salem resident and business owner, has owned Wicked Good Books for seven years. Kent grew up in Salem and moved back because tourism is a major industry in the city. She appreciates not only the boost in the economy resulting from tourists, but also the community impact. “We as residents get to enjoy the benefits of tourism though additional community programs and festivals, along with the beautification of the city. The revenue brought in from the tourism has greatly improved the parks, downtown area, and as a result has made Salem a much more desirable city to live in,” said Kent.
Destination Salem has many resources on its website, and has recently launched a new mobile app to assist visitors to Salem in accessing the latest information. This new app features news, information on walking tours, educational content, and location-based notifications. The Destination Salem app is available for iOS and Android and can be found in the App Stores by searching for Destination Salem, Mass.
Salem, Massachusetts COVID-19 Guidelines
Public health and safety guidelines required due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been rescinded by Massachusetts and the City of Salem, however, many businesses will continue to require all customers to wear masks and may be adhering to capacity limits. Visit salem.org/covid19 or download the Destination Salem app for more information.
About Salem, Massachusetts
Salem is a destination recognized around the world for its rich history, which includes the tragic Salem Witch Trials of 1692, the glorious maritime era that left its indelible mark on Salem through architecture, museums, and artifacts, and for its month-long celebration of Halloween.
About Destination Salem
As the destination marketing organization for the City of Salem, Destination Salem cooperatively markets Salem as one of Massachusetts’ best destinations for families, couples, domestic, and international travelers who are seeking an authentic New England experience, cultural enrichment, American history, fine dining, unique shopping, and fun. For more information, visit Salem.org.
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