In an effort to engage potential visitors to discover all of Albuquerque’s unique offerings, the Visit Albuquerque (Visit Albuquerque) has recruited 11 locals in 10 categories to help tell the city’s story. The national campaign is aimed at encouraging interaction with the Visit Albuquerque website in order to find information tailored to individual visitors’ interests. The local residents were chosen as “experts” based on knowledge of their subject area and their passion for Albuquerque.

The “ABQ Experts” campaign website, incorporates videos, stories, photos and maps to provide customized information for travelers considering a trip to Albuquerque. Visitors are encouraged to submit questions to be answered by the experts. The experts will also be incorporated throughout the Visit Albuquerque website – – the official travel site for Albuquerque.

After preparing the content for the national “ABQ Experts” campaign, Visit Albuquerque felt that locals could be reminded what a great city we live in as well. People love living here for many reasons – the weather, the food, the mountains – the same reasons people visit. Locals are encouraged to check out to share photos and comments related to what they love about Albuquerque. The website will be live beginning Tuesday, May 12th.

“Travel and tourism is critically important to Albuquerque as its second largest industry. We hope that locals will engage and share what they love while realizing that we live in a wonderful destination that millions of people come to visit each year,” said Dale Lockett, Visit Albuquerque President/CEO.

May 12th will be the first-ever U.S. Travel Rally Day with convention and visitors bureau leaders uniting with local government and business leaders to promote the message that "Travel Matters." Visit Albuquerque partners will come together at the 2009 Annual Luncheon to recognize the importance of travel on our community, and launch the national “ABQ Experts” campaign as well as the local “Why We Love Albuquerque” campaign. The luncheon takes place from 11:00am-1:30pm on May 12th at the Embassy Suites Hotel as part of National Travel & Tourism Week, an annual event sponsored by the U.S. Travel Association to increase awareness of the industry’s impact on local communities.

Travel and tourism is:
• A $740 billion industry in America
• Albuquerque’s second largest private industry generating more than $2 billion annually
• Bringing approximately 3.6 million visitors to Albuquerque each year
• Producing over $30.7 million in local taxes annually
• Employing 23,000 people in Albuquerque’s hospitality industry

Contact Megan Mayo for details on the launch of the campaigns at the luncheon or for video/photos of the campaign content.