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Puerto Rico New Year’s Eve countdown rakes in $61M

The second consecutive year of Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest, in which Puerto Rico was featured performing the countdown to midnight in Spanish, was among the most watched national TV shows.

The countdown and the drop of the crystal ball in Times Square boasted 36 million viewers and was the highest rated year-end entertainment shows, according to a Puerto Rico Convention District Authority media release, which added that the return on investment for the government of Puerto Rico was of $61 million, or twice 2021’s. 

“A total of 2.1 billion impressions were achieved, an increase of 1.1 billion over the previous year,” the District Authority said.

“Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest (NYRE) has become an important exposure platform for Puerto Rico as a world destination for entertainment tourism, conventions, and mass events. This investment is part of a set of strategies for Puerto Rico to be top of mind for travelers,” said the executive director of the Puerto Rico Convention District Authority, Mariela Vallines Fernández.

The American Rescue Plan (ARPA) and state funding investment for the event was $3.5 million, while its transmission on YouTube and on the social media platforms that shared it, reached 176,000 people. On Dec. 31, searches for Puerto Rico on Google “increased considerably according to reports,” the government agency pointed out.

Vallines explained that the new year’s eve celebration and “its broadcast on ABC is an effort led by the Convention District that is complemented by promotional initiatives that include: advertising that highlights Puerto Rican life, the warm climate of the island during the winter months and the participation in more than 75 trade fairs in the last months of 2022 to promote Puerto Rico’s offerings as a destination for leisure trips, events, and business meetings.”

“I am very pleased with the results we got by being part of this event and the added value it represents by giving us the opportunity to once again present ourselves to the world as an ideal destination for travelers,” Vallines said.

The second edition of “Puerto Rico for the World” took place on the T-Mobile Plazoleta, or square, which can hold up to 3,000 people, and where the artist Farruko appeared with 1993’s Miss Universe, Dayanara Torres, as hostess. Among the other performers were Gilberto Santa Rosa, Súbete a mi Moto, Plena Libre, Comparsa de Cantores y Vejigantes de Puerto Rico and DJ King Arthur.

“The success of this event was possible thanks to a work group committed to making Puerto Rico shine before the world. I am grateful for the support of Governor Pedro R. Pierluisi, of Discover Puerto Rico, T-Mobile District, the Tourism Company, local producer José Pepe Dueño and the entire component of the Department of Public Safety (DSP), which worked to bring the event to a close without incidents or setbacks,” she added.

The following are Puerto Rico tourism milestones for 2022 sourced from Discover Puerto Rico, the island’s destination marketing organization: 

• Between January and October 2022, the industry generated more than $1.34 billion in lodging, breaking the 2021 record. In November, lodging income was over $1.44 billion. Lodging revenue is expected to have closed some 28 percent higher than last year.

• In November, the number of jobs in the recreation and lodging sectors reached 91,500, the most in the history of Puerto Rico for these sectors.

• The number of airline passengers is at the highest in more than 15 years, with some 10 million travelers going through the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport. A 7 percent increase in passengers is expected in 2023.

• Visitor spending is 19 percent above 2021. This percentage is among the highest among U.S. jurisdictions.

• Hotel reservations and short-term rentals for the first quarter of 2023 were 5% and 20%, respectively, above 2022, according to November data.

• In the first three months of 2022, after the New Year’s Rockin’ Eve celebration, hotel occupancy was 19 percent higher than in 2021 because demand increased 16 percent, and room nights sold rose 38%.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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