Dear TPID Participants:
Welcome from the 2022 San Antonio Tourism Public Improvement District Board.
Those who know me well, know that I have a direct philosophy about life: To overcome obstacles in the world today, there is no place for complacency and complaining. When there is a problem, let’s roll up our sleeves, get out there and fix it.
That philosophy can certainly be applied to the tourism industry today, as we continue to face numerous challenges in our industry. There are question marks in every direction. We must provide the answers. There is plenty to be done.
As the new chairman of the SATPID Board, I am honored to serve and also excited to lead during a time of such upheaval in our industry. I have challenged our board to bring one new idea to every meeting that can spur positive change for the future. In other words, our meetings will be more than just meeting for coffee and pastries. With our new ideas, I know we can make a difference in our industry.
My focus on that positivity stems from my upbringing as a first-generation immigrant to this country. My family moved to the United States when I was just an infant. I learned early that there are opportunities on the horizon, but the only way to take advantage of them is to think of the positives and learn from mistakes along the way.
Many of you have the same attitude, and I believe it is a reason that the tourism and hospitality sector continues to make stubborn gains in the face of a pandemic, economic uncertainty and other obstacles. There is still plenty of work to be done, and your SATPID board is ready to complement those efforts.
Indeed, we are seeing the evidence of those gains in some notable areas.
In December, for instance, hotel occupancy in San Antonio was 57.4 percent, only 0.3 percent behind the same pre-pandemic month in 2019. Average Daily Rate was $114.08, or 4 percent better than December 2019, while RevPAR was $65.49, or 3.7 percent ahead of the same month two years ago.
That December 57.4 percent occupancy figure exceeded many in our comp set, including Dallas (55.4), Houston (48.9), Atlanta (56.0) and Denver (53.5).
The result, in the long run, will be more TPID funds to aid in Visit San Antonio’s marketing efforts to promote our city. You will read about those efforts elsewhere in this report.
Visit San Antonio continues to focus on pushing for the return of our pre-pandemic convention and meetings numbers, and it is seeing an uptick in results there. During the first quarter of FY22, the organization’s Destination Sales & Experience teams were back to making in-person sales calls and attending industry events and trade shows.
Lead generation and booking efforts reached pre-pandemic production levels for the first time in two years, with the Sales team finishing its first quarter having booked 103 events (132 percent to goal), 503 leads (125 percent to goal), 10 corporate citywide leads (200 percent to goal) and 38 need dates filled (122 percent to goal).
Please also note that the SATPID Individual Hotel Incentive Program is still in effect and going strong. With funding still available, please continue to submit applications for up to $75,000 per participating SATPID property.
With all that in mind, we are making a difference, and that is a powerful – and positive – thing. We will continue these efforts over the next two years to not only recover to pre-pandemic levels, but to far exceed them.
All the best to you, our partners, during this time. Please let your SATPID board know how it can help you succeed.
TPID Board of Directors
Administration & Finance
FY 2021 Service Plan Assessments
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 closed the year at $6.39 mil by year end. The increased assessments will be applied to the same service plan categories originally adopted with more than 90% dedicated for sales and marketing programs. This growth helps to demonstrate some of San Antonio’s strong leisure demand influenced in large part by TPID advertising and marketing activities.
FY 2022 Service Plan
In December 2021, the San Antonio City Council approved the FY 2022 Service Plan, which was previously approved by the Tourism Public Improvement District Board. The 2022 Service Plan projects an estimated $7.3 million in estimated revenue assessments for the District in FY 2022, and outlines a corresponding service plan for sales & marketing efforts to align with that projection for FY 2022. Visit San Antonio will work with the SATPID board to execute various strategies to best leverage these resources to help drive additional demand for the destination and properties within the District. The below referenced Service Plan below outlines the major budget parameters of the sales and marketing programming expected in FY 2022.
SATPID FY 2022 – 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-Dec 2021) received from Smith Travel Research (STR) through December 2021 for primary comp cities as well as Top 25 and Total United States. While there is still much more work ahead, overall San Antonio performed well in comparison to other Texas and National Comp set destinations and finished above the average occupancy for U.S. and Top 25 destinations.
Industry Data — Comp Cities Summary
December 2021 vs December 2020
|New Orleans, LA||58.6||105.1||164.21||75.8||96.16||260.6||262.2||0.4||106.0|
|San Diego, CA||60.2||89.4||153.68||57.0||92.49||197.4||200.7||1.1||91.5|
CYTD (Jan 2021–Dec 2021) vs CYTD 2020 (Jan 2020–Dec 2020)
|New Orleans, LA||52.2||27.4||130.77||11.1||68.27||41.5||51.4||7.0||36.3|
|San Diego, CA||61.9||27.1||164.54||26.7||101.79||60.9||72.8||7.4||36.4|
The 4th quarter of calendar year 2021 was a busy time period for both the Destination Sales & Experience Teams, despite the start of the Omicron variant. Both teams were back an exciting back to making in-person sales calls and attending industry events and tradeshows:
- IAEE Expo Expo – December 7-9, Philadelphia
- Visit San Antonio attended this annual trade show in Philadelphia, where we networked with more than 1,500 attendees. We exhibited with our Synchronicities partners, Visit Anaheim and Visit Baltimore.
- Tamale Lifts – Dallas, Austin, Houston and San Antonio:
- We participated in our annual Tamale Lifts in these four cities, where we had overwhelming customer participation. A highlight in Dallas and Austin was the addition of our very own Andrea “Vocab” Sanderson, San Antonio’s Poet Laureate, to help bring the San Antonio holiday spirit to these important customer markets.
- TSAE Holiday Celebration – December 7, Austin
- An annual event in Austin, we supported TSAE with a table sponsorship to this great customer event
- Association Forum Holiday Showcase – December 13-14, Chicago
- A Chicago staple and favorite amongst meeting planners in the Chicago area, San Antonio in collaboration with our Synchronicities partners participated in this trade show. In addition, we held our annual holiday customer dinner in downtown Chicago, where we had close to 50 customers in attendance.
The quarter began strong and continued through the end of the year with the Destination Sales Team’s lead generation and booking efforts reaching pre-pandemic production levels for the first time since Q1-2020. Ultimately, the sales team finished their first quarter of fiscal year 2022 having booked:
- 103 Events (132% to Goal)
- 43% for 2021 – 2022 opportunities
- 80 ITYFTY Events (121% to Goal)
- 503 Leads (125% to Goal)
- 10 Corporate Citywide Leads (200% to Goal)
- 38 Need Dates Filled (122% to Goal)
Equally of note is that 44% of all events booked (45 Events) were new meeting to San Antonio, with 89% of said bookings (92 Events) arriving within the next 48 months! This quarter we were able to confirm nine (9) short term Henry B. González Convention Center bookings totaling over $8M in economic impact for San Antonio, still leaving a robust short-term (2022 – 2024) citywide tentative lead funnel with nine (9) events with an estimated 394.4K total group room nights and all scheduled to close by the end of March!
Though the efforts of the Destination Sales & Experience Teams are certainly to be applauded, the first quarter metrics would have not been possible without SATPID. In August, Visit San Antonio launched the highly impactful 2021 “Sí San Antonio Meetings Incentive Promotion.” This robust short-term recovery initiative bolstered existing hosting obligation funds and incentivizes groups to meet in San Antonio directly based on room nights actualized. This initiative resulted in the contracting of 28 meetings, representing 60.7K total GRNs with an estimate economic impact of $36M. Based on the success of this meetings incentive promotion on short-term availability and need dates, we anticipate a new iteration of this offering with the SATPID Board’s approval in the coming weeks!
Every TPID dollar spent in digital advertising produced a ROI of 1:65 in overall traveler city expenditures (as of December 2021).
Marketing campaigns included promoting San Antonio’s Day of the Dead celebrations. Messaging told the story of the authenticity of Day of the Dead/Dia de Muertos festivities in San Antonio and positioned San Antonio as a premier destination to experience this holiday and the traditions surrounding it. Marketing execution included digital ads, social media posts, prime placement on the homepage of VisitSanAntonio.com, and highlighted positioning in the monthly Visit San Antonio e-newsletter.
Holiday marketing campaigns continued throughout the quarter with ads in both English and Spanish highlighting opportunities to celebrate the holiday season in San Antonio on TV/Cable, streaming radio, digital, and social channels. Our Holiday Staycation campaign targeting locals continued through December as well, generating over 6,000 new users to VisitSanAntonio.com.
Once again, Visit San Antonio was a supporting sponsor of the Valero Alamo Bowl. The marketing department launched a social media campaign encouraging game attendees to stay and play in San Antonio. As part of the sponsorship, we had a full-page ad in the Game Program, an ad panel in the Fan Guide, ad panels in the Bowl Insider email newsletter deployed to over 40,000 subscribers.
Leisure marketing has the opportunity to help fill in gaps that come from the decrease of convention business. Occupancy data has helped identify need dates during the holiday period. Extra media buys were secured through Expedia.com and its owned brands (Travelocity, Hotels.com, Orbits and Expedia), to help spur a reaction from potential travelers during those need dates. The result is that 1758 room nights were secured through the effort with a 21:1 ROI, only in the month of December. Same effort is being developed for the Springtime period, to help close existing gaps in occupancy.
Social Channels and Online Engagement – Audience growth on our US channels was significant over the holiday season; Visit San Antonio social channels gained 2,569 fans/followers across all US channels. Instagram led that growth, followed by Facebook. Engagement on the US channels overall is up 30%.
On our Mexico channels, we are reminding our followers that the borders are now open for car travel as well as promoting air travel to the city. Though we saw a slight dip in followers on our Facebook channel, we saw an almost 2% increase in Instagram followers.
Visit San Antonio has reached over 1,680,000 online engagements – we are 6% over our projected goal for this time of year and on track for our goal of reaching 35 million OLE by the end of the fiscal year. VisitSanAntonio.com saw over 740,000 pageviews in December – topping the most viewed page this month, not including the homepage, was Things to Do. Almost 90% of website visitors in the month of December were new visitors.
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