Dear TPID Participants:
It has been a unique challenge to serve as the chairman of the San Antonio Tourism Public Improvement District board over the past two years. Like many of you, my aspirations for success have included a roller coaster of developments that have impacted the tourism and hospitality industry.
Yet, as I conclude my final few weeks as chair, I do so with growing optimism. Vaccination rates in Bexar County are up, even as the instances of positive infections are continuing to fall. As a result, we have seen a pleasant uptick in our leisure travel, and growing traction in securing meetings as we move forward.
For San Antonio and its economy, these are powerful developments. As a reminder, before the arrival of the pandemic, tourism and hospitality generated a $15.2 billion financial impact each year in our community, making it the city’s third-largest business sector.
The uptick in business means more TPID funds to aid in Visit San Antonio’s marketing efforts, and there are signs it is making a difference. In July, for instance, hotel occupancy in San Antonio was at 74.9 percent, which was only 3 percent down from the same month in 2019, before COVID-19 ravaged our economy. Even in September, hotel room revenue in San Antonio was down only 1.4 percent and RevPAR was down 0.1 percent from September 2019.
There is still work to be done, especially on the meetings landscape, but we are trending in a positive direction. Our numbers in San Antonio continue to be better than many of our comp set around the country, and I am bullish as I look to 2022 and beyond.
As we continue on the road to recovery, I will be working alongside you in a different role. In January, Avinash Bhakta, President of ABH Hospitality Management, will take over as chairman. I thank each of you for your support over the past two years and want to acknowledge your strong support and involvement in that tenure. You are a talented group of hoteliers.
All the best to you and your families during the coming holiday season.
TPID Board of Directors
Administration & Finance
FY 2021 Service Plan
District Assessments are collected by properties and remitted to the City of San Antonio utilizing the same reporting process as Hotel Occupancy Tax. For FY 2021, assessments were budgeted at $5.48 mil but are re-estimated at $6.39 mil by year end. The increased assessments will be applied to the same service plan categories referenced below. This growth helps to demonstrate some of San Antonio’s strong leisure demand influenced in large part by TPID advertising and marketing activities.
SATPID FY2021 – Service Plan/Budget (Oct 01, 2020 – Sept 30, 2021)
|Service||%||$ Budget||$ Estimate|
|Marketing||49.5%||$2.71 mil||$3.16 mil|
|Sales||40.5%||$2.22 mil||$2.59 mil|
|Research and Administration||3%||$164K||$192K|
|Contingency Marketing/Sales Funds||2%||$110K||$128K|
|TOTAL||100%||$ 5.48 mil||$6.39 mil|
FY 2022 Service Plan
In July 2021, the San Antonio Tourism Public Improvement District Board approved the FY 2022 Service Plan (see below) which included an estimated $7.3 million in projected revenue assessments for the District for FY 2022. Additionally, the Board approved a corresponding service plan for sales & marketing efforts to align with that projection for FY 2022. Visit San Antonio will work with the SATPID and the City of San Antonio to officially approve the 2022 Service Plan and renew the District for FY 2022. Currently, that item is scheduled for consideration by the City on December 9, 2021. The Service Plan below outlines the major budget parameters of the sales and marketing programming expected in FY 2022.
SATPID FY2022 – Proposed Service Plan/Budget (Oct 1, 2021 – Sep 30, 2022)
|Research and Administration||3%||$219K|
|Contingency Marketing/Sales Funds||2%||$146K|
|TOTAL||100%||$ 7.30 mil|
Below is calendar year industry data information (Jan-Sep 2021) received from Smith Travel Research (STR) through September 2021 for primary comp cities as well as Top 25 and Total United States. In general, much of the industry continues to show positive signs of recovery through September 2021. San Antonio performed well in comparison to other Texas and National Comp set destinations. Additionally, VSA and SATPIDC will continue to monitor industry performance as we progress further through post pandemic recovery efforts.
Industry Data — Comp Cities Summary
CYTD (Jan 2021–Sep 2021) vs CYTD 2020 (Jan 2020–Sep 2020)
|New Orleans, LA||49.3||18.4||115.86||-6.3||57.14||10.9||22.2||10.1||30.4|
|San Diego, CA||61.1||19.2||164.40||22.5||100.52||46.1||60.6||9.9||31.1|
The 3rd quarter of calendar year 2021 was an exciting time for the Destination Sales Team to get back to making in-person sales calls and attending industry events and tradeshows. In August, we were able to showcase our new SATPID funded tradeshow booth at: Cvent Connect (Las Vegas, NV) and Connect Marketplace (Tampa, FL).
The quarter started out strong, as we continued to host large meetings throughout the city and within the Convention Center. The biggest highlight of our convention summer was hosting the Texas High School Coaches Association, which achieved record attendance of over 14,000 coaches and administrators. This trend carried us through the beginning of August, hosting several large annual groups in the Convention Center such as the Texas Bandmasters Association and the Texas Nursery & Landscape Association. However, in August, the Delta Variant began to have a negative impact for our fall conferences. By mid-August we began to receive our first cancellations due to the Delta variant, which ultimately lead to a total of 5 larger Events representing a $21.3 Million loss in economic impact and a total of 45,633 lost group room nights.
The Convention Sales Team’s lead generation and future meeting confirmations faced a similar story as we headed towards our fiscal year end. July had seen the highest number of new leads since the beginning of the pandemic with 224 opportunities worth just under 272,000 group room nights. By the end of September, we saw that monthly number fall to just 139 new lead opportunities. The strong lead generation that we had seen from May-July did assist our team in their abilities to close on future meeting opportunities, solidifying 115 new meetings. This number represents 44% of all meetings confirmed in Fiscal Year 2022.
Ultimately, the Destination Sales Team finished the fiscal year booking 265 total future meetings (94.3% of goal), worth 339,105 total room nights (104% of goal). Within the fiscal year the team generated 1,480 total new leads, which well surpassed our lead generation goal, achieving 201%.
The start of our destination’s recovery efforts and fiscal year end metrics would have not been possible without SATPID. For fiscal year 2022, the SATPID Board of Directors approved a forecasted $2.95M of funding for Destination Sales & Experience initiatives focused on both the short and long-term recovery efforts such as: Individual Hotel Incentive Program, Short Term Hosting Obligations, Si San Antonio Group Marketing Campaign, In-Market Customer Events and Attendance Building, just to name a few.
The Individual Hotel Incentive Program continues to be a critical resource for capturing short-term group business opportunities with $1M of uncommitted available funds for use by SATPID participating hotels. 2021 FYE, this program generated 26.6K group room nights/$4.9M in group room revenue, while delivering an impressive 15 to 1 ROI in Group Rooms Revenue:
- 36 applications approved
- 43% for 2021 – 2022 opportunities
- 62% Zone 1 Hotels
- 5% Zone 2 Hotels
- 32% Hotels >500 rooms
- 35% Hotels <500 rooms
As a reminder, for fiscal year 2022 (beginning October 1, 2021) the SATPID Board of Directors has increased this amount up to $75K, per participating SATPID hotel!
In August, Visit San Antonio launched the 2021 Sí San Antonio Meetings Incentive Promotion. This robust short-term recovery initiative bolsters existing hosting obligation funds and incentivizes groups to meet in San Antonio directly based on room nights actualized. To date, we have offered the “Si San Antonio” group promotion to 47 meetings, representing 117K total GRNs and are currently working 34 of them directly attributed to this campaign.
As a reminder, qualified groups are able to take advantage of the following incentives to drive short-term opportunities to our destination:
- Between 250-500 total contracted room nights
- $3 per actualized room night
- Between 501-750 total contracted room nights
- $4 per actualized room night
- 751 or greater contracted room nights
- $5 per actualized room night
- For any group contracting the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center for the dates outlined in this promotion will receive a 50% discount on Convention Center rental rates
- All qualifying groups are eligible for Visit San Antonio’s Fly-In On Us Promotion as well, offering a customized visit to experience San Antonio’s offerings
To qualify for the incentives, meetings and events must total 250 or more room nights during a need-time through 2024 and be booked through a Visit San Antonio sales representative with contracts executed by Dec. 31, 2021. For more information on the 2021 Sí San Antonio Meetings Incentive Promotion, including program terms and conditions, please visit Meetings.VisitSanAntonio.com.
Every TPID dollar spent in digital advertising produced a ROI of 1:21 in overall traveler city expenditures (YTD as of Sept 2021).
With more than 75 participating hotels and over 80 restaurants and attractions, the Si San Antonio summer promotion ran from May 26 – September 6. Digital ads, social promotions including both paid and organic efforts, and video ad campaigns ran throughout the summer months. Visitors were encouraged to book their stay with a participating Si San Antonio hotel, but this was not the only opportunity to take advantage of the promotion. QR codes leading visitors to download the Si San Antonio promotion via mobile were spread out throughout the city including the River Walk, San Antonio Zoo, San Antonio International Airport, participating hotels, and high-traffic streets downtown. The final download total came in at over 2,700 downloads with the top attractions for redemption being: Tower of Americas, San Antonio Zoo, Ripley’s Entertainment, and Aquatica San Antonio.
An additional component of the Sí San Antonio campaign was an “Ultimate Staycation” campaign that targeted local residents. View the Local Campaign Video. Street and window decals with the QR code were displayed throughout downtown. Digital, social and video ads ran through summer until September 6.
And lastly, brand awareness ads (in both English and Spanish) utilizing the same Sí San Antonio tagline are running on TV/Cable, radio, And lastly, brand awareness ads (in both English and Spanish) utilizing the same Sí San Antonio tagline ran on TV/Cable, streaming radio, digital outdoor, digital, and social channels. These ads feature aspirational messaging with accompanying images of well-known attractions as well as lesser-known gems. View Brand Video – English and Brand Video – Spanish.
TPID Board of Directors
ABH Hospitality Management
The San Antonio
Hotel & Lodging Association
The Crockett Hotel
Marriott Rivercenter & Riverwalk
Hilton San Antonio Airport
San Antonio Riverwalk
Visit San Antonio
Phoenix Hospitality Group