AUSTIN, TX (July 1, 2021) – Today, the Texas Restaurant Association, the Texas Travel Alliance, and the Texas Hotel & Lodging Association launched a public awareness campaign entitled “Welcome Back, Y’all,” asking Texans and tourists alike to unite behind the hospitality industry’s revival. As millions of Americans prepare for the July 4th holiday, this is an excellent time to celebrate what we’ve overcome together, and to redouble our efforts to rebuild from the devastation created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
To promote the Welcome Back, Y’all campaign, each association will encourage its thousands of members across the state to post and promote this flyer and related media assets, sharing the steps we can all take to help the industry rebuild stronger than ever. We will also be sharing the campaign with our partners in government, who play a critical role in rebuilding our workforce and promoting the local businesses that sustain our economy.
“As horrible as the past 15 months have been for so many, the Texas restaurant industry emerged from the pandemic stronger than many expected because we launched efforts like the Texas Restaurant Promise to ensure our businesses, customers, and team members stayed aligned on the steps it would take to get through the crisis together,” said Dr. Emily Williams Knight, President & CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association. “Now our restaurants – large and small – face a whole new set of challenges as we work to rebuild. When Texas had to fully and partially shutdown our economy and our child care support systems, we lost hundreds of thousands of employees to other industries and family demands. We’re also facing severe supply chain disruptions, causing skyrocketing prices on everything from chicken to cooking oil to paper products. Despite these challenges, the hospitality industry will overcome, just as we overcame the worst of the pandemic, by uniting behind a renewed sense of community and innovation, which is exactly what the Welcome Back, Y’all campaign is all about.”
“There is no question that the travel industry in Texas was one of the hardest hit industries during the pandemic,” said Erika Boyd, Interim President & CEO of the Texas Travel Alliance. “Travel and tourism businesses lost a staggering 582,000 jobs at the height of the pandemic. We have endured the storm, come out stronger on the other side, and are ready to welcome back visitors across our beautiful state, from our picturesque rural landscapes to bustling city nightlife, Texas truly has something unique and memorable to offer every visitor. So pack your patience and come see what truly makes Texas the Friendly State.”
“The pandemic challenged our Texas lodging industry unlike any event in history,” said Scott Joslove, President & CEO of the Texas Hotel and Lodging Association. “However, through even the worst of times, hoteliers remained committed to reliably serving guests in safe environments. As our economy now begins its recovery into the summer travel season, lodging operators across Texas happily greet guests to provide the unique enjoyment of a hospitality experience. Whether business or leisure (or perhaps a combination of both!), lodging professionals in every corner of Texas warmly extend the same message to the traveling public: Welcome back, y’all.”
About the Texas Restaurant Association
The Texas Restaurant Association was formed in 1937 to serve as the advocate in Texas and the indispensable resource for the foodservice industry. Today, as a leading business association, TRA represents the state’s $70 billion restaurant industry, which is comprised of more than 50,000 locations and a workforce of 1.3 million employees. Along with the Texas Restaurant Foundation, the Association protects, advances, and educates the growing industry.
About the Texas Travel Alliance
The Texas Travel Alliance is the primary advocate and voice for the Texas Travel Industry, representing a diverse membership of Texas travel destinations, accommodations, attractions, transportation and support businesses. The travel industry in Texas employs over 1.3 million Texans and has a $169 Billion-dollar economic impact to the Texas economy. The Texas Travel Alliance strives to offer members and their employees industry-leading education and professional development, while advocating to strengthen travel in Texas.
About the Texas Hotel & Lodging Association
The Texas Hotel & Lodging Association (THLA) is the largest state hotel association in the nation, representing every aspect of the lodging industry. Founded in 1903, THLA provides tremendous marketing and educational resources, legislative advocacy, and expert legal services to more than 4,500 members statewide. THLA is a respected organization among property operators and public officials alike, advancing its mission to ensure a strong business climate for lodging and tourism activity across Texas.