COVID-19 Industry Update 19: NC Resident Travel Survey Findings & More

Greetings to Travel Partners,

As traveler concerns rise in the wake of coronavirus, keeping up with visitor sentiment research is key to our industry’s survival response. Visit NC’s recent resident traveler survey provides timely insights into the mindset of our #1 feeder market—NC residents. Read on for Visit NC’s survey results, along with links to national research updates and industry news. Knowledge is power. The Wilmington and Beaches Convention and Visitors Bureau continues to share the latest research, resources and safety guidelines with partners and stakeholders.


NC Governor Roy Cooper announced this week that the entire state of North Carolina will remain paused in the Safer at Home Phase 2 through Friday, Aug. 7, at the earliest. Face coverings must still be worn in public places:

Visit North Carolina released the preliminary of its NC Resident Traveler Sentiment Study (part 1). Study results indicate that as a result of COVID-19, North Carolinians are likely to avoid large cities and crowds. The use of face masks is the most essential safety activity for residents to feel comfortable traveling. Social distancing is also very important, but it is clear from the data that requiring face masks will go a long way in encouraging North Carolinians to travel. Although residents view tourism as important to NC's recovery, they are still reluctant to travel themselves or to welcome travelers into their communities. However, nearly 30 percent of respondents say that COVID-19 has made them become more interested in vacationing within the state. Despite their reluctance to travel during the next three months, nearly 70 percent of N.C. residents say they are likely to take a trip by car. And they will most likely go to destinations offering outdoor activities. The resident sentiment survey will be repeated at least two more times to track changes in sentiment. To view the full report:

Count On Me NC: Attention New Hanover County Travel Partners : If your business has not yet completed the Count On Me NC free COVID-19 training program, now is the time to do it. Visit NC recently launched a $5 million dollar statewide safety advertising campaign that encourages travelers to seek out Count On Me NC businesses. The and websites include a list and map of local partners that have earned their certificates. To date, only 78 local travel partners have completed training. Ideally we hope that ALL of our businesses will participate to show visitors that we care about their safety and are taking extra precautions to create safe travel experiences. It only takes a half-hour or so to complete a training module. It’s easy, it’s free, and it’s important .

Wilmington and Beaches’ Visitor Profile Study : The Wilmington and Beaches’ Visitor Profile Study conducted by Destination Analysts will be presented via webinar to industry partners on Thursday, September 10 (time TBA) along with the area’s fall marketing campaign and other FY20-21 recovery strategic plan initiatives. Stay tuned for a Save the Date notice with more details (coming soon!).

The Wilmington Area Hospitality Association [WAHA] is the only membership-based hospitality industry organization serving Wilmington and the surrounding area. Due to coronavirus, WAHA is waiving membership renewal fees until January 2021. New memberships are also complimentary until January 1. For details, visit the website membership page:
Southeast Tourism Society now has only two STS Top 20 Event deadlines instead of four. Nominate large events taking place January through June 2021 by Friday, July 17:

N.C. Oyster Trail Seeks Charter Members for Unique Tourism Experiences : The N.C. Oyster Trail (, administered by the N.C. Coastal Federation and N.C. Sea Grant in partnership with the N.C. Shellfish Growers Association, is seeking chartger members for unique tourism experiences. The trail includes visitor-friendly businesses such as: restaurants serving NC oysters; seafood markets selling local oysters; shellfish farm tours; oyster educational programs; outdoor recreational businesses; festivals & events, and other businesses that feature local oysters (food tours, arts/crafts, kayak/canoe/SUP excursions, etc.). To find out more about the N.C. Oyster Trail, promotional perks and membership requirements, please visit In light of the impacts of COVID-19 on the oyster tourism sector, fees for the first year of membership can be waived as long as you submit your application by December 31, 2020.


During these challenging times in the ever-changing situation and effects of COVID-19, the following resources offer helpful information, industry guidance, research and more:

NC Restaurant & Lodging Association (guidance updates and more)

New Travel Research :

State of North Carolina Updates :

New Hanover County / City of Wilmington Updates:

Reopening & Safety Guidance :

The Wilmington and Beaches COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Resources page includes a Travel Industry Reopening & Safety Guidance section with links to trade and government resources that our industry can use to reopen safely.
Thank you. Your feedback is always welcome to help the CVB respond to industry needs and concerns. 

Be well and stay tuned,

Connie Nelson
PR/Communications Director
Wilmington and Beaches Convention & Visitors Bureau
505 Nutt Street, Unit A
Wilmington, NC 28401
(P)(910) 341.4030 x120

For the latest COVID-19 Updates and Archived information from the Pleasure Iskland Chamber of Commerce, please CLICK HERE

1121 N. Lake Park Blvd.
Carolina Beach, NC 28428