Cold weather back east means a good tourism season for Tucson

Arctic plunge brings Tucson tourism

TUCSON, AZ (KOLD News 13) - The National Weather service predicts the solar vortex will bring bitter cold conditions to many parts of the Midwest.

Temperatures are expected to reach minus 30 degrees in Minneapolis. The high in Chicago is predicted to be minus 14 for a high temperature. Wind chills could exceed 30 to 40 degrees below zero.

But the brutal weather there likely has an upside in Tucson.

“You never want to be happy for other people’s troubles,” said Dan Gibson, the communications director for Visit Tucson. “But as their weather gets bad, Tucson looks like a great destination.”

This time of year, the tourism office targets cities that have cold weather issues.

Not to rub it in, but to remind them of the things Tucson has to offer when the weather turns sour.

Generally there is a lag between the cold weather and an increase in hotel bookings. It’s thought to be about 90 days. But the weather in the Midwest may push that up a bit.

“We’re already seeing a bump in social media traffic,” Gibson said. “We seen an increase in our website inquiries.”

Visit Tucson also just released its new visitors guide and had 2,000 requests the first weekend.

That means a fairly active spring he believes.

Whether that’s true or not will be reflected in the booking numbers in March and April due to travel lag time.

“I think it’s going to be a good year for Tucson tourism in general,” he said.

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