TORONTO — Tourism Toronto announced it’s once again set a new visitor record with 28.1 million people coming to the city in 2019.
Visitors to Toronto spent $6.7 billion in 2019, including restaurants, attractions, transportation, retail and accommodations — nearly $200 million more than in 2018.
“Toronto’s visitor economy continues to be an economic engine for the city, and that benefits all of us. This is a sector of Toronto’s economy that supports 70,000 jobs and 10,000 new jobs over the past 10 years. It generates billions in tax revenue for all three levels of government and drives growth in the overall economy for the city, the region and the province,” says Scott Beck, president and CEO, Tourism Toronto.
The two largest markets driving this growth are the U.S. — the largest international market — and China — the largest overseas market.
Nearly two million Americans visited Toronto, representing a three-per-cent increase from 2018, while visitor spending was up to $1.35 billion, a 4.4-per-cent increase from 2018. Toronto saw 220,000 Chinese visitors throughout 2019, a 5.4-per-cent decline from 2018.
These results come on the heels of Destination Canada releasing record-breaking Canadian visitor numbers — 22.1 million international visitors and $104.9 billion in tourism expenditures — in 2019.
Toronto’s business-events industry continues to be a thriving component of the overall visitor economy. In 2019, nearly 574,000 delegates attended meetings, conferences and events. The economic impact for meetings in Toronto reached a record $1.24 billion last year, resulting in Toronto being named Canada’s top meeting destination for the second-consecutive year by Cvent.
“I’m proud to champion Toronto’s visitor economy and its benefits to everyone in our city. It’s great to see the number of visitors to Toronto continuing to grow. We want it to grow not only because visitors mean jobs and spending in our city, but also because those visitors, when they experience Toronto, also become permanent residents and job-creating investors in Toronto,” says Mayor John Tory. “We’re Canada’s most-visited city and I would encourage people across our province and around the world to keep visiting Toronto this year.”