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Orlando Hits Record High in Tourism Again

by Lux Joseph 26. April 2015

Orlando is practically in the back yard of Commercial Medical Escorts, just under three hours away from our company headquarters. The U.S. has its own charms and hot spots to visit but there are two places that tourist seem to be very fond of. Both New York and Orlando happen to bring in the largest amount of tourist out of the many other places in the United States, but only one can reign supreme. So which city is it that tourist are picking as their “to go” place? As it turns out, Orland happens to be on top of the hierarchy when it comes to being the center of tourism here in the U.S.

According to Visit Orlando, a whopping 62 million tourist visited the Florida city during 2014 in hopes of having a good time, which, according to Orlando Sentinel, is “That is more people than the populations of Florida, Texas, Massachusetts, and Delaware, combined”.  Although this isn’t too much of a surprise, as Orlando did open up a few more attractions, including Universal Orlando’s diagon alley, from the Harry Potter series, for those of you who are unfamiliar.  

George Aguel, the President and CEO of Visit Orlando, said “This historic milestone is the latest testament to Orlando’s leadership in tourism.” He continued to say “It’s a tribute to the steadfast commitment and continued investment by our tourism community, the special brand of service that greets our visitors and the global marketing and sales efforts of our Visit Orlando team and member companies.”

This wouldn’t be the first time that Orlando has broken this record. In 2013, the record was broken with an astonishing 59 million people, and again New York coming in second place. More so, Orlando was able to break another record in 2014. Apparently, they were able to sell 32 million room nights, which amounted to over 200 million, the largest that the Orange County has ever seen. Mayor Teresa Jacobs commented “The impact of tourism on our community is remarkable and, in fact, the travel and tourism industry is the largest generator of jobs and economic impact for our region...”

Although New York did have something to say in response to the victory. Chris Heywood, an official at NYC & Co., said “We congratulate them on those numbers,” It seemed like a friendly enough thing to say, but he continued to say “We're thrilled to be the number one destination for international visitation. That is a market that stays longer and spends more money.” This just happens to be the case. New York, while not the top when it comes to general tourism, leaps bounds over everywhere else when it comes to international tourist, leading with a 12.2 million people, and Orlando only having half that amount.

Even so, it is a great achievement to be the leading in the total amount of tourism coming into a place. If anything, it might be a good idea to start planning a trip, just to see what all the fuss is about.

 

Sources:

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/officials-orlando-top-us-tourist-destination-2014-30174715

http://www.bizjournals.com/orlando/blog/2015/04/orlando-becomes-first-destination-to-surpass-60m.html

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/business/tourism/tourism-central-florida-blog/os-orlando-visitation-record-2014-20150409-post.html

http://www.travelweekly.com/North-America-Travel/Orlando-breaks-visitor-record

http://www.ibtimes.com/orlando-surpasses-new-york-most-visited-us-city-1574621 

Disney World Implements a New Disability Policy

by Lux Joseph 11. October 2013

On a daily basis, CME is working with individuals with disabilities. Those individuals who have special needs and disabilities require special assistance from our team and we focus on delivering individualized quality service to meet those needs. As we have mentioned before, every traveler has different needs and we tailor each of our transports ensure their travel home is comfortable. Breaking news from the Walt Disney World Company this week was presented to those travelers with disabilities about a policy change at their theme parks and how those travelers will be affected in their upcoming visits.

Obviously this policy does not affect Commercial Medical Escorts, Inc. when we are transporting patients around the world, but I think it is important to recognize policies that are affecting the population that we assist each and every day. On Wednesday, Disney introduced a new policy for those travelers with disabilities to reduce the number of people that have been abusing the policy. Over the years numerous guests to the resort have hired tour guides that are disabled to go to the front of the line of every ride attraction. For those individuals with a disability, this seems reasonable and appropriate, but when people start faking a disability, utilizing crutches or other disability tools, or hiring a disabled tour guide to zip to the front of every line the policy gets abused. That is exactly what happened and Disney World is taking action and taking a firm position to address the situation.

It is a sad and disappointing situation for those travelers with true disabilities however, the Disney World Company believe they are effectively finding a solution. With any change to policies and procedures there will always be someone who is not satisfied with the result, but it is important for the resort to look at different perspectives and find the best system to assist the travelers with special needs. It may appear that the disabled travelers are being punished for actions completed by those who exploited the program, but at this time the program has only been in place for three days and I believe improvements will continue to take place with this program.

The new system is similar to the Fast Pass program that is currently in place for guests to return to an attraction ride at a later designated time to reduce the wait time in long lines. The new Disability Access Card will act similar to that program.  The Walt Disney World website outlines the program as the following:

The DAS Card is designed to accommodate guests who aren’t able to wait in a conventional queue environment due to a disability (including non-apparent disabilities). A Disability Access Service Card will be issued at Guest Relations main entrance locations and will offer guests a return time for attractions based on the current wait time. As soon as the Guest finishes one attraction, they can receive a return time for another. This service can be used in addition to Disney’s FASTPASS Service and Disney FastPass+ service. (www.disneypakrs.disney.go.com)

Everyone has their opinion about the program but the purpose of the program is to eliminate the abuse that the system has had over the years. Disney takes pride in ensuring that each guest is treated as an individual and providing assistance to those travelers with disabilities will always be a focus of the program. Each and every case will be handled by Disney on a case by case basis.

Commercial Medical Escorts takes the time to ensure our travelers with disabilities have a positive experience on their way home with our medical escort. From airline tickets, airport accommodations, ground transportation, and helping the patient get settled into their home/residence, CME takes time to make sure our patients have everything they need to travel comfortably.

Our in-house travel department has travel professionals who are accessible travel advocates certified by Special Needs Group www.specialneedsgroup.com, the leading global provider of special needs equipment for the travel industry. These individuals have unique, specialized knowledge about how to help individuals with disabilities enjoy a wonderful, hassle-free and memorable trip. By having our travel department specialized in this area, we can ensure our patients and clients, that we are doing everything possible to provide the highest level of patient care.

 


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