The Maryland Office of Tourism recently announced that beginning July 1, all eight state-operated welcome centers have expanded service to operate seven days a week. Located in every region of Maryland, the welcome centers are staffed with certified travel counselors who offer statewide tourism and travel information, hotel reservation assistance, greeting of motor coaches, suggestions for itineraries, maps and travel guides, and a listing of all local events.
"Tourism is one of our most important economic drivers and we are committed to offering our visitors the best possible customer service," said Governor Larry Hogan. "As we continue to welcome more visitors to our state for vacation as well as business travel, we want to ensure that they have access to all Maryland has to offer."
Demand for service has increased as visitation to Maryland continues to grow. In 2016, Maryland welcomed 42.1 million domestic travelers, an increase of 4 percent according to a national survey of U.S. travelers conducted by D.K. Shifflet and Associates. Eighty-two percent, or slightly more than 34.6 million, were leisure travelers, and the remaining 17.8 percent, or close to 7.5 million, were business travelers.
Two of Maryland's welcome centers recently earned the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence designation, which recognizes tourism-related establishments that consistently earn high reviews from travelers on the TripAdvisor web site.
The welcome centers operate each day from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. year-round, and are closed on major state and federal holidays. For more information and locations of the Welcome Centers, visit www.visitmaryland.org or call 1-800-719-5900.