DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES (KABC) — As COVID restrictions continue to loosen up in Los Angeles, tourism is picking up. This weekend, the L.A. Convention Center will be the site for the 16 Annual L.A. Travel and Adventure Show, which is back after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

“You are going to come this weekend and discover thousands of vacation options from the top destinations from all over the world,” said Jonathan Golicz, vice president of Travel and Adventure Show. “We couldn’t be more excited. I think one of the hardest-hit industries is the travel industry.”

And the industry was hit hard here at home. According to the city, overall visitation dropped from about 50 million in 2019 to almost 27 million in 2020 and approximately 40 million in 2021. As for international travel, it dropped from 7.4 million in 2019 to under 2 million in 2020 and under 3 million in 2021.

“We know that the last two years gave us the toughest hits that we have ever been dealt, maybe the toughest two years in our city’s history,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “But we are not just determined to survive that moment but to thrive afterward. To build to greater heights what we could with the tourism industry.”

That’s why, this week, Mayor Garcetti signed an executive directive creating a tourism cabinet to bolster the city’s tourism industry and prepare for global events like the Oscars and the Olympics in 2028.

“Los Angeles will be a brand new city reborn in the decade to come,” said Mayor Garcetti.

According to travel experts, it’s cheaper to book a hotel room right now than booking an Air BNB and it’s important to book future travel plans as soon as possible.

“Fuel surcharges are about to come in and they going to really increase the cost of travel,” said Pauline Frommer, a publisher with Frommer’s.

The L.A. Travel and Adventure Show will be open on Saturday and Sunday at the convention center.

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