APTA | Passenger Transport
July 20, 2009

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COUNTDOWN TO 2009 ANNUAL MEETING

What’s in Orlando? Here Are Some Fast Facts

More than 48 million visitors come to Orlando each year for business and pleasure. Of that number, 45.9 million come from within the U.S. and 2.8 million from other countries. Approximately 46 percent of Orlando’s international visitors are from western Europe, followed by Canada with 28 percent.

The greater Orlando area is home to more than 1.9 million people in a region consisting of Orange, Osceola, Seminole, and Lake counties. The city is located in Orange County. In all, greater Orlando encompasses 2.6 million acres.

Orlando offers more than 100 attractions. Counting the legendary theme parks, spectacular museums, world-class entertainment, and blockbuster rides and attractions, it would take about 67 eight-hour days to visit all the entertaining offerings in Orlando.

Within a 15-mile radius in the heart of Orlando’s attractions area, visitors will find 12 major shopping malls and factory outlet centers.

With more than 5,300 restaurants, Orlando’s dining choices read like a world map. Visitors from virtually anywhere in the world can find a taste of home here, with international cuisines ranging from African to Vietnamese. All flavors of American fare are represented as well, from Southern/Creole comfort foods and dinner theaters to wine bars and restaurants owned by celebrity chefs.

For guests wanting to be pampered, Orlando’s got the answer: 20 destination spas offering a wide range of treatments, whether for a couple of hours or for a full day.

Visitors take great delight in Orlando’s impressive lineup of world-class performing arts. The Orlando Opera; Orlando Ballet; Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, in partnership with the University of Central Florida; Bach Festival Society; Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra; Broadway Across America-Orlando series; and several professional and community theater companies are just a few of the area’s entertainment options. In addition, House of Blues and Hard Rock Live offer concerts many nights of the week. Cirque du Soleil has a permanent show at Downtown Disney, while Universal CityWalk is home to a new Blue Man Group show.

The multitude of arts and culture offerings in Orlando prove that the area is a haven for artists and performers. It hosts hundreds of museums, galleries, theaters, gardens, historic homes, as well as acclaimed ballet, opera, and philharmonic companies and traveling Broadway shows. Many of Orlando’s arts offerings can be found along its “Cultural Corridor,” a seven-to-eight-mile stretch along Interstate 4 (I-4), spanning from downtown Orlando to historic Winter Park.

Few destinations in the world come close to rivaling Orlando’s year-round recreational offerings: more than 2,000 lakes, springs, and rivers for swimming, boating, water skiing, and fishing; 176 golf courses; 800 tennis courts; and 21 fitness trails for biking, walking, or in-line skating.

Orlando’s average temperatures for October are in the low 70s to mid 80s during the day, low to high 60s at night.

Orlando International Airport is located within 15 miles of the Orange County Convention Center and major attractions. More than 40 scheduled airlines, 12 charters, and 10 cargo companies provide non-stop service to 84 destinations in the United States and 17 international cities.

More than 36 million passengers used Orlando International Airport in 2007, making MCO the busiest airport in Florida and 10th in the U.S. In a 2008 survey by ForbesTraveler.com, the airport was ranked as the most on-time airport in the country and eighth most on-time in the world. Conde Nast Traveler Magazine ranks Orlando International Airport in the top five airports nationwide in areas including ease of connections, food and shops, and comfort and design in its annual Business Traveler Awards (August 2008). Orlando International Airport is also ranked second in overall passenger satisfaction for large airports nationwide according to the latest J.D. Power and Associates study (September 2008).

Amtrak serves more than 28 Florida communities with north and southbound daily trains originating from New York and Miami, as well as the Auto Train, which transports passengers and their vehicles daily between Lorton, VA, and Sanford, FL.

Orlando is an ideal starting point for a host of easy day trips. From sun-drenched beaches and scenic nature preserves filled with rare wildlife to high-energy spectator sports and unique cultural, educational, and historic attractions, visitors can find them all within an hour’s drive.

Sports fans are in their element in Orlando thanks to the area’s great lineup of collegiate and professional sporting events. From the National Basketball Association’s Orlando Magic and the University of Central Florida Knights football to Orlando Predators arena football, and spring training with the Atlanta Braves, the Orlando sports scene gives fans plenty of reasons to cheer. Orlando is also home to a new Major Indoor Soccer League team, the Orlando Sharks.

Orlando hosts some of the sport’s most talented players each year during two annual Professional Golfers’ Association of America (PGA) tournaments. The Arnold Palmer Invitational, Presented by MasterCard at Bay Hill, is held in March. The Children’s Miracle Classic is played on Walt Disney World golf courses in October. The Del Webb Father-Son Challenge is held in December at ChampionsGate Golf Club.


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