The Princeton Regional Convention & Visitors Bureau has received a $123,000 grant from the state to promote tourism in the region.
For the sixth year in a row, the bureau has been awarded funding by the state Division of Travel and Tourism through a competitive application process. The bureau is one of 14 destination marketing organizations to receive grants totaling more than $1.3 million to expand tourism marketing opportunities in New Jersey. Destination marketing organizations work with entertainment venues, restaurants, retail outlets, and hotels to promote a municipality or region’s historical, cultural, and artistic attractions.
The funds will be used for various marketing initiatives, including online projects. Large posters will also be placed on train platforms as part of a commuter marketing piece in order to attract people to the regions’ dining and shopping opportunities. Last year the funds were used to develop the vistprinceton.com mobile site to help tourists access information on the go.
Tourism expenditures in Mercer County were $1.08 billion in 2011, an all-time high. This marks a 10 percent increase over 2010’s expenditures, according to the recent release of the 2011 Economic Impact Study of Tourism in New Jersey, conducted by the State’s Division of Travel & Tourism.
Marketing approaches for spreading the word about the arts, cultural and historical offerings of the Princeton region include focusing on leisure travel, including bus tours and youth tours; working with meeting planners, and reaching independent foreign travelers who are already vacationing in New York or Philadelphia.
“If you or I took the family to London, we might go to Oxford for a day trip,” said Adam Perle, vice president of the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce. “We want foreign travelers to come to experience all the Princeton region has to offer for at least one day, if not more.”