Statewide Billboard Program Aims At Healing Tourism Economy Locally


Beginning this month, a MBTA billboard campaign will kick off to promote local destinations across the Commonwealth—including the North Shore— with the goal of driving the local tourism economy safety in the face of COVID challenges. 

Over the next three months, statewide digital billboards and MBTA stations will display “With Love From…” postcards from the tourism regions around Massachusetts.  It is meant to help restart the industry as the state slowly reopens, and to remind locals that they can be a tourist at home.  Destinations selected for the campaign include Cape Cod, Western Mass, the Berkshires, Plymouth, Nantucket, and the North Shore, among others.  The campaign will run for three months. 

Recent traveler sentiment surveys show that people will travel close to home and will look for accommodations, dining and activities outdoors that are attesting to safety guidelines.  Tourism is one of Massachusetts' key industries, accounting for nearly $24.2 billion in direct spending in 2018 and generating $1.6 billion in state and local taxes.  The industry supports 153,200 jobs across the Commonwealth and $5.6 billion in wages.  This sector has suffered the largest job loss during the pandemic, touching every part of the state.  The “With Love From” campaign reminds Massachusetts residents that the travel industry is open and safely caring for guests, and that its family and neighbors who work in the tourism industry are looking forward to going back to work. 

“At the same moment Governor Baker declared a state of emergency on March 10, the 16 Regional Tourism Council directors were meeting in Boston,” said Ann Marie Casey, co-chair of the North of Boston Convention Bureau. “It was immediately evident to us that the damage to the tourism industry was going to be historic and we needed to plan for the day we could reopen.” 

The billboards will lead to a landing page where visitors may choose a region of interest and click through to destination websites for regional updates and travel info.  

No word on how many billboards in the campaign, deployed on state-owned media in commuter rail and “T” stations, will feature the North of Boston post card.

commonwealth day, baker, boston, regional tourism council, massachusetts, travel industry, boston convention bureau