“Because we did better than a lot of destinations across the country, we’re hoping to see that rebound a little bit faster,” said Andrea Czopp.
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. — Throughout the pandemic, tourism has been one of the hardest-hit industries.
However, last month, we reported in Niagara Falls, there were already some slight indications of recovery.
Andrea Czopp, the Vice President of Operations with Destination Niagara USA, said she’s hopeful for the remainder of fall, after what started as a rocky beginning to spring and summer.
Czopp told 2 on Your Side, “Obviously just like the rest of the tourism industry across the world, once everything shutdown those first couple of months were very, very grim.”
She explained once Western New York entered Phase 4 of reopening things started to turn around, with an uptick in local tourism again.
“We did fair better than a lot of destinations across the country in somewhat of a rebound just given the fact that we have a lot of wide-open space. The Niagara Falls State Park is 400 acres. Many of our attractions across Niagara County are outdoors,” said Czopp.
With many people still uneasy about flying, Destination Niagara USA saw more visitors coming from areas within driving distance.
Czopp explained, “Our largest numbers coming into the falls in the drive market have been New York City. I think people just feel more comfortable staying in the state right now.”
Moving through the fall and soon into winter, Czopp said they plan to continue marketing to nearby areas, pushing the region’s year round attractions and open spaces.
Just one example of how Niagara Falls is showing signs of a comeback already, Czopp said the Saturday or Labor Day Weekend, hotel occupancy was at 96 percent. She told 2 on Your Side that was about 40 percent higher than the national average.
“The indications are showing that it’s gonna take about 12 to 18 months to get fully back to where things were across the country, but because we did better than a lot of destinations across the country, we’re hoping to see that rebound a little bit faster,” said Czopp.
To learn more about destination Niagara USA, click here.