Visit Pasadena Celebrates 40th Anniversary of National Travel & Tourism Week

May 12, 2023

SMARInsights shares findings: Pasadena is beautiful and comes highly recommended

Visit Pasadena, the official visitor’s bureau for the City of Pasadena, celebrated the 40th annual National Travel & Tourism Week (NTTW) on May 10 with an audience of board members, tourism and hospitality professionals. Held in the iconic Gold Room at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, the inaugural annual meeting spotlights the U.S. travel industry’s key role in economic growth and moving #TravelForward.

"Travel continues to trend upwards and domestic leisure travel has essentially recovered to 2019, adjusting for inflation,” shared Kristin McGrath, Executive Director of Visit Pasadena. “We are proud to celebrate the contributions that travel has brought to Pasadena throughout history, from Henry Huntington’s railroads of yesteryear to today’s iconic music festivals and this summer’s enchanting celebrations. Travel continues to play a key role in the long-term health of Pasadena’s economy and community.”

To elevate marketing efforts, Visit Pasadena invited Stephanie Brown, Executive Vice President of SMARInsights, to share the recent findings on Pasadena’s visitor profiles. The profile was developed by surveying 1,370 visitors and potential visitors to Pasadena. Key takeaways include:

  • Pasadena’s visitors are well traveled: Pasadena's visitors report an average of 11 trips a year and spend an average of $2,400 per trip.
  • Pasadena’s visitors are mostly young couples and young families: 60% of Pasadena visitors come for leisure purposes, of which, 77% travel with their spouses and 44% travel with their children under 18.
  • Pasadena’s downtown, shopping, and dining are key travel activities and leisure trip motivators: 68% of visitors experience the downtown areas, 63% come to shop, and 63% come to dine.
  • Pasadena is beautiful and fun: Almost all visitors have a positive experience in Pasadena and over 90% are likely to recommend it to others. Beautiful was the most prevalent word used to describe Pasadena, from visitors and potential visitors. Pasadena gets strong ratings for having great events and festivals, high-quality dining, being fun, and having local and independent shops.
  • Special events and tournaments account for a third of leisure trips: Among those who are visiting for leisure, the main purpose is for vacations and weekend getaways. 20% came for a special event, festival, parade, or live performance and 12% were in Pasadena for a sporting event or tournament.

“We’re thrilled to share these findings,” said McGrath. “By leading with a data-driven foundation, we can all work together to strategically promote the full Pasadena experience and keep moving travel forward. We look forward to continuing the NTTW tradition in Pasadena annually.”

“In Pasadena, there’s so much to be excited about,” said Pasadena Center Operating Company Chairperson Tyron Hampton. “Our hotels, diverse restaurants, fun shopping, enchanting architecture, remarkable attractions, and world-class events allow discerning travelers to engage in an abundance of enriching activities.”

Established in 1983, NTTW is an annual tradition to mark the U.S. travel industry’s role in stimulating economic growth, cultivating vibrant communities, creating quality job opportunities, stimulating business activity and elevating the quality of life for everyday Americans.

Helpful links:

U.S. Travel Association:
Visit California:

About Visit Pasadena

The Pasadena Convention & Visitors Bureau (Visit Pasadena) is a non-profit marketing organization dedicated to promoting Pasadena as a leading meeting, convention and leisure travel destination. It is responsible for the sales and marketing efforts to attract meetings, conventions, events, and leisure travel. Through the impact of travel, Visit Pasadena enhances the local economy for the well-being of the community. For more information, go to Follow us on Instagram and Facebook at @VisitPasadena.