Philly tourism site tops in virtual visits

If web traffic is any measure of travelers’ interest in a destination, 2012 was a good year for Philadelphia. 

Meryl Levitz, who heads the Greater Philadelphia Tourism and Marketing Corporation, says the organization’s website had a 30 percent increase in visits over 2012.

A survey of the tourism websites of the nation’s 10 largest cities by the research firm Quantcast found VisitPhilly.com the most visited in the country, Levitz said.

“More and more — and this includes older audiences, younger audiences — people are turning to the Web to get ideas on where they want to go what they want to do,” Levitz said.

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 Levitz said Philadelphia’s many festivals and other events help bring tourists to town.

“Big events such as Made in America or World Soccer Cup — these are national and international events that have wide built-in audiences, and that puts Philadelphia on the map for many people who did not think of the city as a place where big things could happen,” Levitz said.

Officials have also developed a new marketing package called “With Art Philadelphia” that combines a hotel stay with guaranteed admission to six top art destinations, from the Barnes to the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology. 

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