New York sees record number of tourists in 2012

New York sees record number of tourists in 2012

It’s not your imagination -- it really is getting tougher to find a cab in “the world’s greatest city”
Empire State Building
Crowds are still willing to endure painfully long lines to get to the observation deck of the Empire State Building. A record 52 million visitors came to New York in 2012.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for hotel rooms to get affordable in New York City.

With Gotham welcoming a record 52 million visitors in 2012 (a 2.1 percent increase over 2011) the city solidified its standing as the United States’ premiere city destination.

And the out-of-towners are spending.

According to a press release on the city government’s website, tourism generated $55.3 billion in economic impact.

Among U.S. destinations, New York grabbed a dominating overseas market share of 33 percent. Approximately 41 million domestic visitors and 11 million international visitors hit the town last year.

About 29 million sold hotel room nights generated $504 million in hotel tax revenue.

“The tourism industry is creating thousands of jobs for New Yorkers at all rungs of the economic ladder,” said New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg in the press release. “We are well on our way to achieving our new goal of 55 million visitors and $70 billion in economic impact by 2013.”

According to Robert Steel, deputy mayor for economic development, tourism is the city’s fifth largest industry, employing 356,000 New Yorkers.