New initiatives launch to promote travel and support local hospitality Industry

(Austin, TX - May 2, 2021) National Travel and Tourism Week, the annual celebration of the contributions of the U.S industry, spotlights the critical role that travel plays in driving economic recovery efforts and building a path forward through the theme “Power of Travel.”

“The local hospitality industry was one of the hardest hit in our city during the pandemic and will be one of the last to recover with more than 60,000 local jobs lost and many visitor related businesses shuttered in the past year,” said Tom Noonan, CEO and President of Visit Austin. “Despite the hardships of the last year, Visit Austin is eager to welcome back visitors and help drive Austin’s recovery efforts,” he added.

Visit Austin is saluting the power of travel through several initiatives to support our hospitality industry and to keep Austin top-of-mind for trip planning.

Way Better Live Campaign

A new leisure-focused advertising and digital campaign - Way Better Live - will launch this week. Supported by a multichannel media mix, the campaign will inspire potential visitors in the regional drive market and select national fly markets to book Austin for their next vacation. View campaign creative here.

“Developed in partnership with local advertising agency, Third Ear, Way Better Live is an exciting remedy to this past year of wanderlust. We invite visitors to come and safely experience the destination - It’s Way Better Live,” said Tiffany Kerr, Vice President of Marketing for Visit Austin. “Just like our music, Austin’s food, outdoor spaces, arts and culture and local businesses are also best experienced live,” Kerr added.

Visit Austin Foundation’s Hospitality is Hiring Program

The Visit Austin Foundation launched the Austin Hospitality is Hiring initiative to support our local hospitality workforce. More than 25 businesses are participating, including hotels, restaurants, event planning and production companies and more. The program will generate awareness of career opportunities within the industry and available jobs throughout our city. Learn more at

“Many of our hospitality businesses are experiencing staffing and workforce development issues and we are pleased to provide support during recovery,” said Mary Kay Hackley, Executive Director of the Visit Austin Foundation.

Visit Austin 3D Portrait Series

Throughout the week, Visit Austin will be promoting a 3D portrait series on Twitter (@VisitAustinTX), which shines a spotlight on some of the people that make Austin a world-class destination. Features include musician Jackie Venson, artist Vy Ngo, and restaurateurs Tavel Bristol-Joseph, Iliana de la Vega and Anthony Sobotick and Chad Palmatier. These individuals in the music, art and food scenes are vital to Austin’s hospitality industry and its recovery, along with many others in the community. In each post, Visit Austin will share a couple of the local businesses and attractions each person enjoys visiting in Austin. You can also follow this series on Instagram (@VisitAustinTX) all year.

Additional activities are planned throughout May to continue to raise awareness of the tourism industry’s impact on our city.

Economic Recovery Series

The Austin Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Recovery Series, will feature an in-depth conversation on where the hospitality and tourism industry is today and where we are headed as the city reopens its doors to visitors. The virtual event will be held on Wednesday, May 12.  More details here.

Downtown Austin Front-of-House Clean-up Day

The Austin hospitality and tourism industry is excited to begin welcoming visitors back and to ensure that our city is “guest-ready.” Visit Austin and the Visit Austin Foundation have teamed up with the Downtown Austin Alliance for the inaugural hospitality industry ATX Front-of-House refresh - a morning of beautification projects throughout downtown and other hospitality hubs on Tuesday, May 18. More details here.

Please visit to learn more about National Travel and Tourism Week.


About Visit Austin

Visit Austin is the official destination marketing and sales organization for the City of Austin. An accredited member of Destinations International, Visit Austin is charged with marketing Austin nationally and internationally as a premier business and leisure destination, thus enriching our community's overall quality of life.