(Downtown) - The American Bus Association announced today that Cleveland will host the ABA’s annual Marketplace, to be held January 14-17, 2017 at the Cleveland Convention Center.

The ABA Marketplace is the motorcoach, travel and tourism industry’s premier event.

The American Bus Association President and CEO Peter Pantuso said Cleveland is the place to be right now, with lots of new exciting attractions, and having landed the 2016 GOP convention, and LeBron James.

It is anticipated that 35-hundred ABA Marketplace member will attend the 2017 convention reserving about eight thousand hotel room nights.

Positively Cleveland President David Gilbert maintained the ABA Marketplace convention will bring 3,500 visitors to downtown in the middle of winter pumping an estimated $7,000,000 into the local economy.

So if ABA Marketplace members are impressed, the Northcoast could see a 20% increase in motorcoach and group tourism, as members recommend Cleveland as a vacation destination.

A single motorcoach visit to the region can generate as much as $11,660 for the local economy in lodging, meals and other spending. In 2012, motorcoaches were responsible for nearly 650 million passenger trips, and many of those group tours are booked at Marketplace.

During the 2014 Marketplace in Nashville, the 3,500 members in Nashville generated nearly $130 million dollars in total business, that’s nearly $89,000 per company.

ABA President Peter Pantuso

"The American Bus Association is thrilled when we can bring new cities into the ABA Marketplace family,” said Pantuso, CTIS. “Cleveland will be a fantastic host city. We know our members will have a great time, visiting the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the city’s many other attractions, and, of course, generating tens of millions of dollars’ worth of travel and tourism business for Cleveland.”

“The ABA’s Marketplace is the Super Bowl for travel and tourism - and the City of Cleveland is honored to be able to host an event of this magnitude in January of 2017,” said Gilbert. “Much like the group tour industry, Cleveland is experiencing a rebirth with nearly $3 billion in visitor-related infrastructure developments that have enhanced the overall visitor experience. With that said, we are excited to introduce our city’s attractions, restaurants, and accommodations to the 3,500 members of ABA, while showcasing Cleveland as a top group tour destination,” Gilbert added.

The American Bus Association (ABA) is the trade organization of the intercity bus industry, with more than 1,000 motorcoach and tour company members in the United States and Canada.

Its members operate charter, tour, regular route, airport express, special operations and contract services. Another 2,800 members are travel and tourism organizations and suppliers of bus products and services who work in partnership with the North American motorcoach industry.

(Photos by Ken Robinson/WTAM)

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