FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2019
Harrisburg, PA – Today, the Pennsylvania Tourism Office announced the release of its annual Happy Traveler guide, a resource to inspire avid travelers to pursue their happiness in Pennsylvania. Released on National Plan for Vacation Day, the guide is full of fun-filled attractions, history-filled streets and museums, and breathtaking outdoor vistas to help travelers create their 2019 Pennsylvania bucket lists.
In Pennsylvania, 43 percent of the workforce has unused vacation days for a total of more than 23 million days. These unused days account for nearly $4.1 billion in potential economic impact which is up from $3.8 billion last year. With help from the 2019 Happy Traveler guide, visitors are encouraged to declare their time off and plan an adventure in Pennsylvania.
“This is the year for travelers to take a joy ride in our storied amusement parks, marvel at our magnificent murals, explore the greater-than-great outdoors, and really embrace the ‘WOW’ factor from our many only-in-PA attractions,” said Carrie Fischer Lepore, Deputy Secretary of Marketing, Tourism, & Film at the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. “Every year, we develop and create the Happy Traveler guide to inspire everyone, especially those siting on vacation days, to explore all the Keystone State has to offer.”
This year’s feature story showcases the state’s vibrant amusement parks, many of which have been in operation for more than 100 years.
Other special features in the guide include:
- A chance to experience Fred Rogers’ actual neighborhoods in his hometown of Latrobe and production home of Pittsburgh on the Fred Rogers Trail;
- A look into the marvelous machines that transported travelers from one destination to the next;
- Spectacular urban dining experiences with great views in vibrant cities;
- New wave drinks in old-school buildings;
- Lodging options found lakeside; and
- Spooky museums and tours.
The Happy Traveler is available digitally at visitPA.com or in print by calling 1-800-VISIT-PA. Travelers are encouraged to share photos of their favorite Pennsylvania Happy Traveler adventures using the hashtag #PAHappySnaps across visitPA.com’s social media channels.
National Plan for Vacation Day encourages workers to use their vacation days to build strong bonds with family and friends, as well as devote time for rejuvenation and relaxation. Last year, 52 percent of Americans left vacation time on the table and accumulated 705 million of unused days. This has gone up from 662 million days the year before.
Along with the Happy Traveler release, the Pennsylvania Tourism Office had a successful year in marketing the state. Since the “Pursue Your Happiness” brand launch in March 2016, online traffic to visitPA.com has reached 4.7 million annual visitors. Although dramatically outspent by competing states, the office once again conducted a targeted four-season advertising campaign in metropolitan New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Baltimore, Cleveland, and Columbus.
The Pennsylvania Tourism Office is dedicated to inspiring travel to the commonwealth. Pennsylvania hosted an estimated 204.4 million travelers in 2017 who directly injected $43.3 billion into Pennsylvania’s economy and supported nearly 510,000 jobs.
MEDIA CONTACT: Michael Gerber, 717-783-1132