The U.S. Open tennis tournament, New York Fall Fashion Week and the U.N. General Assembly meetings, which together attract nearly one million attendees and make every September an economic windfall for New York City, will be unrecognizable this year.
The three high-profile September events have been dramatically scaled back, with limited in-person attendance and much of the activity set to be hosted online. Their dwarfed presence comes as New York City’s long-thriving, multibillion-dollar tourism industry braces for a punishing fall and winter after the coronavirus-induced economic shutdown this spring darkened Broadway, canceled conferences and emptied hotels.
The city—an early epicenter of the outbreak that has now become one of the cities with the fewest cases in the U.S.—saw a roughly 90% decline in visitors during the last quarter of fiscal year 2020, which ended June 30, New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer said in a recent interview with MarketWatch. That