Emanuel Wants 50 Million Tourists Per Year In Chicago By 2020

CHICAGO (CBS) — Mayor Rahm Emanuel plans to open new Chicago tourism offices in three new countries this year, and hopes to have 50 million tourists coming every year by 2020.

The mayor told the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau Thursday that he wants to see new Chicago tourism offices in Brazil, Germany and Japan later this year. A news release did not specify which cities would get the offices.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s David Roe reports

Chicago-centric tourism offices opened last year in London, and last month in Mexico City and Toronto.

“Chicago is a global city with worldwide appeal, and I am committed to ensuring that people around the world have a chance to experience our magnificent city firsthand,” Mayor Emanuel said in a news release. “I am dedicated to dramatically increasing the number of visitors to Chicago and fostering economic development and job growth throughout the city as a result of these efforts.”

Earlier this year, the city combined its tourism efforts into one organization, called Choose Chicago. Previously, the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau and the Chicago Office of Tourism had operated separately.

The combined office will save $2 million a year, which can be directed toward attracting visitors to the city, the Mayor’s office said. In particular, the Mayor’s office wants to see more overseas visitors, who spend an average of $4,000 per trip.

The mayor has set up a goal for the city to attract 50 million visitors every year by 2020, and rank in the top five cities nationally for volume of international visitors. Currently, despite being the nation’s third largest city, Chicago comes in at No. 10 among tourist destinations.

Emanuel also announced that Chicago will host the U.S. Travel Association International Pow Wow in 2014. The convention is considered the leading marketplace for the travel industry, and it has not been held in Chicago since 1998.

Last summer, Choose Chicago unveiled a marketing campaign that proclaimed the city “Second to None.”

  • seen it all

    this is great news for the flash mobs on michigan avenue.

    • Roberta Waker

      Until he gets crime and shootings under control; this is a dream. No one wants to go to a city known for its crime, especially its shootings. How many tourists will be killed with 20 mil visiting Chicago? Too many.

  • Gregg

    OF coarse he wants 50 million tourist a year,because 49 million of them will probably be KILLED!!! here.

    • civilized

      What an uneducated fool, lol. Must be another one of those pathetic, government dependent, welfare recipients from the ghetto!

  • iris

    In his dreams.

    • civilized

      Well, Chicago had over 40 million visitors a couple years ago and ranked in the top 5 of most visited US cities despite being largely outspent on tourism marketing by Orlando, Vegas, New York and other cities. If the the city actually goes out and spend a few extra million and market iself then the 50 million visitor goal is more than attainable.

      So iris, I say in your dream!

  • Virgilio Lintag

    Chicago has got nothing to offer..Your Tourism services people in Chicago are lazy…they never offer a FAMTRIP..they just pocket their budget..Tour Agencies are not protected by the city, anyone can just do the business even just the conductors from foreign countries… Your Tourism Employees doesn’t know the business at all..

    • donkor

      My Dear Sweet Friend,

      From a person who has lived in Chicago more than fifty years, thanks for the heads up. We do not travel much, and know nothing about that industry. However, our MOVEMENT hope to attract worldwide attention and therefore look forward to receiving international guests.

      Yet, tourism is alway threatened by violence, regardless of the nation. Here in Chicago gang and mob violence threatens that quite achievable goal of 50 million more so than the failures of our travel and tourism industry.

      We wonder how the mayor plan to address the gang and gun violence that seem to be unstoppable, at least in some communities. When such tenative assaults such as that carried out against St.Sabina Church in response to that pastor’s call for action against gang and gun violence in the community happens in any city, one should take that to mean no one or no place is immune to gang attack.

      It would severely hamper or damage the mayor’s mission if we continue to have astounding weekend violence such as that of recent days.

    • civilized

      Sounds to me Virgilio, you have nothing to offer. You might as well end your life, loser!

  • buttons

    I see that number (50 mill tourists per year) unreachable at this point unless a few things change. Number one, the weather. Chicago doesn’t have the greatest climate. Number two, the crime. Way too many shootings and murders in our city. Number three, the cost. Chicago has the highest sales tax in the country. Why would anyone want to shop here? Not to mention the highest gas prices. Aside from those negatives, Chicago does have a lot of of good things to offer as far as museums and architecture, restaurants, and losing professional sports teams. LOL

    • donkor

      My Dear Sweet Friend,

      Are you from here, Chicago? Remember, the 2005 White Sox were champions!

      The Bulls had there days, and more to come!

      The Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup in 2006, was it?

      College wise, Illinois got to the finals in basketball in the last decade,

      Even though the Cubs are usually losing, every now and then they make a decent run! And, at least the new owners seem to be trying.

  • resident1963

    And if we mail them several hundred dollars of speed camera tickets after they return home, you better believe they’ll come right back to our fair city! Oh, and the glowing recommendations they will make to their friends will bring even more people. Rahm is a genius!

  • Reb Biker

    I guess Rahmbo could fence off the South and West sides and tell visitors it’s a big wild primate zoo.

    • THEE Yard Ape

      @Reb – CLASSIC!! LOL !!!

  • Curly

    Buttons has some good points. But, Winsconsin is the place to be. You got cheese curds and the Packers. That’s all ya need in life.

  • buttons

    Dear sweet Donker, those few wins hardly makes Chicago a championship city! In the history of Chicago, count how many championships we’ve had. (oh yes, I AM from Chicago) It’s a pretty measly number. I think I’m gonna join Curly up in the northwoods and root for da Packers and eat cheese coids. LOL! JK

  • Curly

    Hey Buttons! I don’t blame ya. We gots the Badgers and the Brewers too. Milwaukee ain’t half bad either. I never met a Packers fan I didn’t like neither. Come on up, buddy!

  • buttons

    Hey Curly, I ain’t a dude, just so you know. Are you floitin’ wit me?

  • Curly

    Aw, shoot. I sometimes come across a little forward. Sorry, pal. Hey, are there any Chess King stores in Chi town? I can’t for the life of me find one in the cheese state. I’d make a trip down if anyone can steer me in the right direction. There ya go! I’d be a tourist in your great city!

  • Frank_comments

    Will Rham-a-dum-dum import them?

  • malcom

    If you are smart and don’t want to be robbed , beaten, raped and maybe murdered then stay away from Chicago

  • G-Lep

    I would like to direct all 50 million tourists to Queen Rahm’s house at 4228 N. Ravenswood. Please take special note of the painted pink front porch!

  • Frank_Comments

    Or to your address: under-any-rock, Chicago, IL.

  • G-Lep

    Oh, hi, Francine! Howya been, a$$wipe?

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  • http://www.travellingingermany.info/2012/04/chicago-to-open-tourism-offices-in-brazil-germany-and-japan-chicago-sun-times/ Chicago to open tourism offices in Brazil, Germany and Japan – Chicago Sun-Times | Travelling in Germany

    […] CBS Local […]

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