VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Virginia Beach has launched an advertising campaign aimed at attracting visitors from nearby cities as officials look to restart tourism amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Virginia Beach’s visitors bureau was set to begin circulating a campaign to potential tourists, including those from 10 cities deemed within driving distance of the resort area, including Richmond, Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Charlotte, North Carolina; Baltimore and Washington, among others, WAVY-TV reported Monday.
Two commercials were posted to the Convention and Visitors Bureau’s YouTube page May 22, the same day Gov. Ralph Northam allowed the city’s beaches to reopen for sunbathing and surfing after being closed to such activities for about two months. He cautioned that beachgoers “must be responsible” with the new guidelines.
The commercials include the tagline “We’re Open,” with a voiceover announcing “in good times and bad, our beaches have always been there for us,” before highlighting that the city would be taking safety measures as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
“We are advertising that we are transitioning that we are ready for people to visit,” Virginia Beach Deputy City Manager Ron Williams told the station.
He added that officials are still being “very cautious” about encouraging visitors from “hot spot areas.”
“When they are ready and we start to see cases drop down a little, we’ll encourage their visiting as well,” WAVY-TV quoted him as saying.
On May 5, the City Council approved a transfer of $2 million to an advertising fund set up to create a campaign that would promote the city as a summer destination, The Virginian Pilot reported at the time.