The U.S. Travel Association and Brand USA honored 57 of the world’s highest-producing tour operators and buyers of U.S. travel at its annual Chairman’s Circle Honors awards reception, which took place during the recent IPW trade show in Las Vegas.
Held at The Mayfair Supper Club in Las Vegas during the 52nd annual edition of IPW, the exclusive awards event honored international travel buyers for outstanding efforts to bring the world to America. Remarks thanking the select companies for efforts to grow international inbound travel to the United States were delivered by U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow and Brand USA President and CEO Christopher L. Thompson.
TV Host and world traveler Samantha Brown was on hand to congratulate Chairman’s Circle honorees for their contributions to the U.S. travel industry and introduce the evening’s entertainment. The U.S. Travel Association’s Chairman’s Circle-level board members, including top U.S. travel businesses and destinations, nominated the honorees.
“After two long years apart, IPW’s mission of bringing the world to America has never been more important,” said Dow. “As the U.S. travel industry recovers from the pandemic and prepares to welcome back visitors from around the world, the tremendous work of our Chairman’s Circle honorees will help showcase the U.S. as a top destination and accelerate the revival of the international inbound travel sector.”
Following is the complete list of the 57.
Six U.S. Cities Make List of World’s 25 Best
In selecting the World’s 25 Best Cities of 2022, the Resonance consultancy ranking considered a city’s diversity, cultural programming, as well as its response to COVID and ability to rebound. “Our goal here was not to just create an index for tourism or just for business or just for livability. It was really to provide and create a ranking that took a holistic view of the city,” Chris Fair, president and CEO of Resonance Consultancy, said when the list made its debut on AFAR.com. “When we say ‘best cities,’ it’s not just best city to live, it’s not just best city to work, or best city to visit. It’s taking a cross section of all those factors.”
Resonance also considered how a city responded to the COVID-19 pandemic over the past 18 months. Welcome to the World’s Best Cities of 2022, which for the second year in a row includes considerations like outdoor experiences, clean air, and an ability to innovate.
The areas they ranked cities on were grouped into six core categories, including Place, People, Programming, Product, Prosperity, and Promotion.
Place: This includes weather (the average number of sunny days), safety (homicide rate), as well as neighborhoods and landmarks (specifically the number of which were recommended by locals and visitors) and outdoors (or the number of parks and outdoor activities recommended by locals and visitors).
People: The People category takes into account the city’s diversity (percentage of foreign-born residents) as well as the educational attainment (percentage of population with a bachelor’s degree or higher).
Programming: This is what most guidebooks would call “things to do” and includes experiences offered in the areas of culture (specifically performing arts), nightlife, dining, and shopping recommended by both locals and visitors.
Product: The Product category, on the other hand, includes each city’s infrastructure and institutions. This is where attractions and museums are considered, as well as other areas like airport connectivity (or the number of direct destinations served by the city’s airports), university ranking (specifically the ranking of the top local school), and the size of the local convention center.
Prosperity: This category includes the number of Global 500 corporate headquarters located within each city, the GDP per capita, the income equality index, and the unemployment rate. While most travelers wouldn’t necessarily factor these things into choosing a destination, Resonance believes greater “prosperity” draws more people to live in these cities, which eventually drives more economic growth and development. That means better dining options, cultural institutions, and airports in the long run.
Promotion: In addition to relying on user-generated data from locals and visitors to vet dining and shopping recommendations, this list also looked at how popular each city was online. The Promotion category—or how a city’s story is shared through online channels—is based specifically on the number of Facebook check-ins, Google searches, TripAdvisor reviews, and Instagram hashtags shared online about each city, as well as the popularity of each city in Google Trends over the last 12 months.
With all of those things factored in, here’s how the rankings of the world’s best cities landed for the 2022 report, released September 21, 2021: