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by NYC Editor , 10/20/2010

 
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NEW YORK CITY, CHICAGO AND AMERICAN AIRLINES PARTNER TO BOOST TRAVEL BETWEEN THE TWO CITIES

“Live More Tour” Designed to Increase Travel Between New York City and Key US Markets

Special Fare of $89 Each Way between NYC and Chicago Available for Limited Time for Reciprocal Travel During First Quarter 2011

Chicago (October 20, 2010)—New York City and American Airlines today joined Chicago tourism officials to announce their first-ever collaborative effort to bolster tourism and promote travel between New York City and Chicago in 2011. This city-to-city partnership comes as NYC & Company continues its national Live More Tour, designed to give travel incentives to visitors through exclusive flight deals and consumer offers in the two destinations. NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta; Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau Executive Vice President Mark Theis; Chicago Office of Tourism Director Dorothy Coyle and American Airlines Vice President of Passenger Sales–Central Division Thomas Aichele made the announcement at Millennium Park in Chicago.

"Travel is an opportunity for people to broaden their horizons—truly giving us all the chance to live more," said George Fertitta, NYC & Company CEO. "More than 47.5 million are expected to visit New York City this year, with our ultimate goal to welcome 50 million visitors annually by 2012. With that in mind, we are pleased to partner with the City of Chicago and American Airlines to directly promote tourism between our great cities in 2011. Our hope is that this is the first step in a collaborative effort that will create larger support for the country’s multibillion-dollar industry, which employs more than 8 million people nationally."

“The visitor industry drives a key component of Chicago’s economy, bringing in more than $10 billion in spending each year and helping to sustain restaurants, hotels and local businesses. We would not be the vibrant city we are today without the visitor industry,” said Mark Theis, Executive Vice President of the Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau. “This is an important effort to reinvigorate travel, and we are proud to join forces with a great American airline and another world-class American city. I encourage New Yorkers to shop our Magnificent Mile, experience Broadway in Chicago and indulge in a slice of authentic Chicago pizza. Thanks to this partnership, there’s no better time to book a flight.”

"Chicago and New York are both outstanding year-round destinations, full of great events and activities that take place both indoors and out. We are very excited to be partnering with NYC & Company and American Airlines to encourage travel between our cities," said Dorothy Coyle, Director of the Chicago Office of Tourism.

To promote travel between New York City and Chicago, American Airlines today unveiled a special limited-time reciprocal airfare deal of $89 each way. Reservations must be made and tickets must be purchased by October 22, 2010. Valid for round-trip travel to O’Hare airport and to the three primary New York City airports (JFK, LGA, EWR). The valid travel period will be January 5, 2011 to February 25, 2011 with embargoes from January 15-17 and February 18-21, 2011.

"American Airlines is pleased once again to partner with NYC & Company to promote travel between New York City and our top American gateways," said Gerard Arpey, Chairman and CEO of American Airlines. "This relationship is important for our business, and we are committed to working with local tourism organizations and hope to attract more visitors and commerce to each of these cities."

The Live More Tour—targeting travel between New York City and the metropolitan areas of Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles—comes on the heels of the Obama Administration’s appointment last month of NYC & Company’s CEO George Fertitta to the 11-member Corporation for Travel Promotion. The board is tasked with administering the successful launch of the Travel Promotion Act, which will put in place a new public-private matching-funds program featuring up to $100 million in private-sector contributions and, potentially, $200 million overall to promote the United States. The landmark legislation is expected to generate approximately $4 billion in new visitor spending and create 40,000 new jobs annually.

Last year New York City welcomed approximately 555,000 Chicagoans while approximately 872,000 New Yorkers visited the Chicago area. More than 4.4 million total passengers traveled between Chicago and New York City, with 37 percent flying on American Airlines. There are more than 50,500 flights per year between Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports and the three major airports that serve New York City; American Airlines represent 30 percent of flights to O'Hare.

In 2009, New York City welcomed 45.6 million visitors who collectively spent $28.2 billion. For 2010, NYC is forecasting 47.5 million total visitors (which will represent a 4.2 percent increase over the previous year) who will collectively spend an estimated $30 billion. Approximately 80 percent of New York City’s visitors are domestic. In August 2010, New York City’s leisure and hospitality industry employed 322,200 people—this represented an increase of 5.3 percent over the previous August.

In 2009, Chicago welcomed 39.6 million visitors representing $10.2 billion in spending and 125,000 jobs.

In addition to the exclusive American Airlines travel offer, New York City and Chicago officials today promoted several marketing programs and events for travelers to take advantage of over the upcoming months. NYC & Company highlighted its Get More NYC campaign partnering with American Express, American Airlines, AT&T, YP.com and Travelocity and at retailers, restaurants, theaters and other culture institutions around the five boroughs. Some of the NYC promotions taking place this winter include the first-ever Broadway Week offering two-for-one tickets to more than 40 of Broadway’s hottest shows (January 24–February 10); the upcoming NYC Restaurant Week Winter 2011 offering visitors prix-fixe meals at nearly 300 of the City’s high-end restaurants (January 24–February 6); and the Off-Broadway promotion “On the House” offering theater enthusiasts two-for-one tickets to some of the City’s most celebrated Off-Broadway shows (January 24–February 13). In addition, more than 80 of the City’s top hotels will offer up to 35 percent off their best available rate from January 2 to February 28 when travelers book between October 15 and November 2. Further details on all of NYC & Company’s winter promotions can be accessed at nycgo.com.

In the months ahead, the City of Chicago encourages visitors to take advantage of the many, world-class events taking place across the city including skating on the world's highest ice rink at the John Hancock Center (January 1–March 31); Chicago Boat Show (January 12–16); Snow Days Festival (January 28–30); Chicago Winter Dance in Millennium Park (February 5–27); Chicago Auto Show (February 11–20); Chicago Restaurant Week (February 18–27) and museum free-admission days. These events, combined with the lowest rates of the year at hotels. make for a fun, affordable trip.

The Live More Tour launched yesterday in Miami. For more information on booking travel to New York City, visit nycgo.com. For more information on travel to Chicago, visit http://explorechicago.org/" target="new">explorechicago.org and http://readysetchicago.com/" target="new">readysetchicago.com.

American Airlines travel bookings can be made through AA.com—fares are reciprocal for travel between Chicago and New York City and New York City and Chicago. These special fares are on sale for a limited time—from October 20 through October 22 —so act quickly. Fares are valid for round-trip travel to and from both Chicago and New York. The overall travel period runs January 5–February 25, 2011 with travel embargoes on January 15-17 and February 18–21, 2011. The fares require a 14-day advance purchase, are nonrefundable and require a Saturday-night stay. A $150 change fee applies, as does the 9/11 Security Fee and PFCs (Passenger Facility Charges) of up to $4.50 per segment, depending on the airport.

Fares shown do not include a Federal tax of $3.70 per domestic segment (defined as one takeoff and one landing), passenger facility charges of up to $18, and the September 11th Security Fee of $2.50 per enplanement at a US airport. Fare shown is each way based on roundtrip for economy class travel purchased on AA.com no later than October 21, 2010. Travel is valid starting Jan. 5, 2011 with all travel completed by Feb. 25, 2011. Embargo dates: Jan. 15-17 and Feb. 18-21, 2011. The fares are non-refundable and require a Saturday night stay. A $150 change fee applies. See AA.com for complete details and conditions.

For high-resolution images from today's event, visit nycgo.com/pressphotos and select "Today’s News."

About NYC & Company: NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For more information, go to nycgo.com.

About the Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau: The Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau (CCTB) is the sales and marketing organization responsible for promoting Chicago as a premier meetings and convention destination driving bookings into McCormick Place, Navy Pier and member hotels. The CCTB works in partnership with its more than 1,100 members; the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, owner and operator of McCormick Place and Navy Pier; Chicago Office of Tourism; World Business Chicago, and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s Bureau of Tourism, and other related associations.

About the Chicago Office of Tourism: The Chicago Office of Tourism, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, is the official City agency dedicated to promoting Chicago to domestic and international visitors and to providing innovative visitor programs and services. Visitors and Chicagoans planning to entertain out-of-town guests can receive Chicago brochures, reserve hotel accommodations and receive trip-planning assistance by calling toll-free 1.877.CHICAGO (1.877.244.2246) or visiting http://explorechicago.org/" target="new">explorechicago.org. Brochures and information on Chicago events and activities are also available at the Visitor Information Centers located at Chicago Water Works, 163 E. Pearson Street at Michigan Avenue and the Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph Street. The TTY toll-free number for the hearing impaired is 1.866.710.0294

About American Airlines: American Airlines, American Eagle and AmericanConnection® serve 250 cities in 40 countries with, on average, more than 3,400 daily flights. The combined network fleet numbers more than 900 aircraft. American's award-winning website, AA.com®, provides users with easy access to check and book fares, plus personalized news, information and travel offers. American Airlines is a founding member of the oneworld® Alliance, which brings together some of the best and biggest names in the airline business, enabling them to offer their customers more services and benefits than any airline can provide on its own. Together, its members serve nearly 700 destinations in more than 130 countries and territories. American Airlines, Inc. and American Eagle Airlines, Inc. are subsidiaries of AMR Corporation. AmericanAirlines, American Eagle, AmericanConnection, AA.com, We know why you fly and AAdvantage are trademarks of American Airlines, Inc. (NYSE: AMR)

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Contact: Tiffany Townsend/NYC & Company 212.484.1270