New Airline coming to Tampa – Copa

VSPC Partners with Tampa for New Panama Service
Copa Airlines To Fly Four Times A Week Starting This December
St. Pete/Clearwater, FL (July 17, 2013) – In a joint press conference this morning, officials from Visit St. Pete/Clearwater, Tampa International Airport and Visit Tampa Bay joined Copa Airlines executives to announce the Panama-based airline’s new nonstop service to Panama’s Tocumen International (PTY) beginning Dec. 17, 2013.

With connections to all major cities in Brazil and Colombia—as well as Latin American capitals including San Jose, Caracas, Buenos Aires, Lima and Quito, among others—the new service will effectively connect Tampa Bay to the entire Latin American market for the first time in the area’s history.

“Opening up Central and South America via brand-new Copa service is a real game-changer for us,” said D.T. Minich, executive director of Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater. “The growth potential for this market is huge, and we’re prepared to nurture this market like we have done with our European offices over the years.”

Minich used today’s press conference to announce the formation of a new Latin American sales department within Visit St. Pete/Clearwater, the first new sales department to be added in nearly two decades.

“This is the time for us to expand our presence across Latin America, and we are prepared to do what it takes to make this a success,” added Minich. “This is an extraordinary opportunity.”
Other local officials agree.
“This is a huge win for the Tampa Bay region, opening an easy connection for business and leisure travelers to all of Latin America,” said Joe Lopano, CEO of Tampa International Airport. “Our success in recruiting Copa is the result of tremendous cooperation with our community partners, who helped us make a compelling business case for this market to one of the world’s most successful airlines.”

Santiago Corrada, CEO of Visit Tampa Bay, said that his organization’s efforts to attract conference planners and organizers from around the world will also benefit from the new service. “Together as a team, we will sell our destination in Latin America,” Corrada said.

Copa offers flights to more international destinations than any other airline from any other hub in the Latin American region. In-transit passengers making connections do not have immigration/customs waits and baggage is checked to the final destination.

Copa, which transported more than 10 million passengers in 2012, operates one of the youngest and most modern fleets in the industry, and its on-time performance above 90 percent is among the best worldwide. A member of the Star Alliance, Copa was just named “Best Airline in the Central America and Caribbean region” at the Skytrax World Airline Awards.

The Tampa Bay area will be Copa’s ninth U.S. destination and its 66th destination overall.
Thanks for all the info VSPC and it was so cool seeing them at the airport !!

VSPC is the destination marketing organization for Pinellas County, Florida.
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VSPC Rocks ‘100 Days of Summer’ With New Twist


St. Pete/Clearwater, FL (May 22, 2013) – Though St. Pete/Clearwater is justifiably renowned for its casual vibe and laid-back beach appeal, those with a sense of history know that this place has been truly rocking for a long time.

Like back in ’61, when Doors front man Jim Morrison did a stint at St. Pete Junior College. Or in ’65, when the Rolling Stones penned their classic “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” in a Clearwater hotel room after a riot at Jack Russell Stadium. Or in February of ’77, when Elvis Presley rocked St. Pete’s Bayfront Center so hard he broke his guitar strap—then handed his guitar to a stunned fan in the front row.

Or even more recently—like in 2006 when British super-group Coldplay shot their “Hardest Part” video on a makeshift stage in downtown St. Pete. Or in 2007, when country superstar Carrie Underwood shot her lush, black-and-white “Wasted” video at Fort De Soto Park.

So in honor of this rockin’ heritage, this summer St. Pete/Clearwater will be rocking its 100 Days of Summer all over again with an amped up theme—Where Summer Rocks—a multi-tiered summertime promotion designed to celebrate everything that rocks about the St. Pete/Clearwater area.
Elements include all-new TV, radio and online ads driving visitors to a day-by-day calendar of the coolest things to see and do for the whole family all summer long, plus a chance to win a smokin’ grand prize: a Rock Star Getaway, complete with a week-long stay in a luxury waterfront hotel, round-trip airfare, concert tickets, a photo shoot, shopping spree and more.

The promotion, which kicks off Memorial Day Weekend and runs for 100 days through Labor Day Weekend, also includes weekly prizes via various social media channels, including YouTube, Facebook and Instagram (#WhereSummerRocks) where visitors can showcase how they rocked St. Pete/Clearwater with their very own “Rockumentary.”


Where Summer Rocks – click Below


This is one of my favorite beaches. Just Beautiful and lots of Fun!!

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Thanks to VSPC for all the info and pictures.