by Lisa A. Grimaldi | March 21, 2018

New York City welcomed a record 62.8 million visitors in 2017, an increase of 2.3 million tourists over 2016. Of the 2017 visitors, 6.2 million were meetings and conventions delegates, according to NYC & Company, the Big Apple's destination-marketing organization.

The rise came despite the Trump administration' policies and rhetoric, e.g., travel bans from Muslim-majority countries. Instead, arrivals to the city comprised 49.7 million domestic and 13.1 million international visitors, both all-time highs.  

"Despite geopolitical challenges and a travel ban that made our task of promoting tourism more challenging than ever, we are pleased to see that we overcame these hurdles to realize a consecutive eighth year of tourism growth in New York City, welcoming an all-time high of 62.8 million visitors last year," said NYC & Company president and CEO Fred Dixon. "The strength from our Asia and South American markets helped offset drops in our traditional European core markets. At the same time, the city continued its constant trend of reinvention, always offering countess reasons to visit and discover all that our five boroughs only can offer, both iconic and new. And campaigns to counter the negative rhetoric, such as New York City-Welcoming the World, reaffirmed our commitment to being an open and welcoming global capital."

In 2017, NYC & Company launched two campaigns, the aforementioned "New York City-Welcoming the World" and "True York City," which helped position the Big Apple as a must-visit destination despite challenges in the geopolitical climate and changes in travel policies. NYC & Company also signed a record number of international city-to-city tourism partnerships to boost travel, including new alliances with Cape Town, South Africa; Toronto; Tokyo; and renewals with Mexico City and Seoul, South Korea. These partnerships included media exchanges to further promote New York City abroad.

NYC & Company anticipates 2018 will be another year of growth; the DMO expects a 3.7 percent increase, to 65.1 million visitors, this year.