Albuquerque Celebrates Global Meetings Industry Day
Local meetings industry convenes to highlight the undeniable value meetings and events bring to the Albuquerque community and its economy
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – (March 30, 2023) – Visit Albuquerque today was joined by representatives from the local meetings industry to celebrate Global Meetings Industry Day and highlight the impact meetings and events have on Albuquerque.
Visit Albuquerque partnered with the City of Albuquerque (CABQ), the New Mexico Chapter of Meeting Professionals International (MPI), the Rocky Mountain Chapter of International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), the New Mexico Society of Association Executives (NMSAE), the Greater Albuquerque Hotel and Lodging Association (GAHLA), the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce and the Albuquerque Convention Center/ASM Global to support #GMID2023 by sharing the message that #MeetingsMatter in Albuquerque.
GMID, led by the industry advocacy coalition Meetings Mean Business, brings together organizations across six continents to showcase the value of the meeting industry and spotlight the importance of in-person events.
“The tourism and hospitality industry is one of the city’s largest private industries and one of Albuquerque’s most effective economic development strategies,” said Tania Armenta, President & CEO of Visit Albuquerque. “Today we celebrated a vitally important sector of that industry – meetings and events. Visit Albuquerque, with the help and support of the City of Albuquerque and our local hospitality partners, is focused on bringing meetings and events to Albuquerque, which stimulate the economy by welcoming new visitors who stay in area hotels, eat in local restaurants and shop in neighborhood stores, resulting in new revenue to the destination. The industry also brings key leaders to Albuquerque which can translate to other business opportunities for the community and state.”
Meetings and events are a critical component of Albuquerque’s tourism and hospitality industry, which brings in 6.7 million visitors who spend $2 billion annually and support more than 43,000 jobs within the metro area. In fiscal year 2022 (July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022), Visit Albuquerque – with assistance from its partners and the local hospitality community – supported 201 meetings, conventions and sporting events that brought more than 224,000 attendees to Albuquerque and generated nearly $60 million in estimated direct spending. According to U.S. Travel and Tourism Economics, in 2022, meetings and events generated nearly $100 billion in travel spending in the U.S., directly supporting 600,000 American jobs.
“Albuquerque has welcomed some significant events and conventions this fiscal year,” said Scott Craighead, Vice President of Sales, Services & Sports for Visit Albuquerque. “Our accessibility, affordability, outstanding weather and one-of-a-kind experiences help Albuquerque stand out from other destinations, and we are confident these inherent assets will pave the way for us to welcome even more visitors for future meetings and events.”
On the horizon are high-profile meetings such as the 2023 National Migrant Education Conference (April 30-May 3), estimated to bring 1,200 attendees to the city; the Al-Anon Family Groups 2023 International Convention (June 30-July 2), with an estimated attendance of 4,000; and the American Society of Animal Science 2023 Annual Meeting (July 16-20), estimated to bring 1,200 attendees to Albuquerque. These are just a few highlights of future meeting and event bookings.
While the meetings and events industry has made steady progress towards recovery, there is still an uphill climb until this critical segment is fully recovered. According to the U.S. Travel Association (USTA), leisure travel spending continues to steadily increase and was 4% above 2019 levels in January of this year, while group business travel spending remained just 67% recovered in 2022. While visitations are projected to recover in 2024, business travel spending—once adjusted for inflation—is not projected to recover until 2027, according to USTA.
Global Meetings Industry Day serves as a reminder that nothing can replace face-to-face meetings. A Hilton-sponsored Washington Post article states that nearly eight in 10 business travelers and decision-makers believe the benefits of in-person meetings or event outweigh the convenience of meeting virtually. There are many benefits to face-to-face meetings, including education and training opportunities and access to more information through informal conversations.
About Visit Albuquerque
Visit Albuquerque is an accredited destination marketing organization (DMO), and a private, not-for-profit organization [501(c)(6)]. The mission of Visit Albuquerque is to stimulate economic growth by marketing Albuquerque as a convention, sports and visitor destination. For more information, go to www.VisitABQ.org.