by Elise Schoening | January 17, 2020
NYC & Company, New York City's convention and visitors bureau, and Marketing Manchester, which represents the northwestern English city, have announced a new tourism partnership. The two-year agreement will include ongoing collaborations between the cities, the sharing of best practices in destination marketing and a new partnership with Virgin Atlantic.

The news was revealed at a signing ceremony at Manchester's Cultureplex with Marketing Manchester managing director Sheona Southern, NYC & Company president and CEO Fred Dixon, and Virgin Atlantic's head of brand strategy and campaigns Hai Bei Chen all in attendance.

"It's a pleasure to announce our newest tourism-marketing partnership with one of the United Kingdom's most important Northern England cities. Both destinations are capitals of diversity and iconic hubs of arts and culture, sports and media," said Dixon. "We believe there is outstanding potential to further develop joint tourism opportunities between Manchester and New York City. We look forward to collaborating with Marketing Manchester, Manchester Airport and Virgin Atlantic to further solidify this new alliance and in so doing, welcome more visitors to our welcoming urban destinations."

The city's latest alliance with Manchester comes as Virgin Atlantic expands its service between the two cities. The airline is increasing its capacity from Manchester to New York by 65 percent this winter and will debut a new Clubhouse lounge at Manchester Airport in the spring. The lounge will include à la carte dining, a full-service bar, quiet work spaces and a spa for upper-class customers and Gold card members. 

As part of the agreement, New York City and Manchester will exchange $500,000 worth of marketing assets in each destination. In addition, New York City will advertise on digital billboards on Manchester's main roads and across Transport for Greater Manchester, while Manchester will promote itself as a premier destination at New York City bus shelters and on Link NYC digital screens.

"I'm incredibly proud that Marketing Manchester has been able to secure what is undoubtably a very powerful partnership with NYC & Company," said Southern of Marketing Manchester. "New York City is one of the top tourism destinations in the world and to be able to align ourselves with a city that we have so much in common with -- especially in respect to being open, diverse and welcome destinations -- is a huge coup and speaks volumes about Manchester's increasing global profile."

NYC & Company and visitBerlin struck a similar partnership in September.