|by Michelle Baran||South Korea, Seoul, New York City||2|
New Yorkers are being encouraged to visit Seoul, and Seoul's city dwellers to come to New York as part of a new joint marketing agreement between the two cities.
This week, the Seoul Metropolitan Government and NYC & Company, New York's tourism marketing arm, signed a one-year agreement to engage in a reciprocal marketing effort. Thus, in Seoul, 133 posters promoting New York will start to appear in Jongno (the South Korean capital's downtown area), Gangnam (a higher income neighbor south of the city), and at the main train station, Seoul Station. In New York, 70 posters promoting Seoul will pop up around the city, and digital ads will appear on the Clear Channel Spectacular screen in Times Square.
The cites also partnered with Korean Air to offer a limited-time airfare deal, starting from 1,310,000 South Korean Won ($1,094, based on current exchange rates) from Seoul to New York, and starting from $1,295 for flights from New York to Seoul. The flights from Seoul to New York must be purchased by Oct. 31 for travel between Nov. 1, 2011 and March 31, 2012 (restrictions apply; prices exclude fuel surcharges and taxes). Flights from New York to Seoul must be purchased by Oct. 28, for travel between Nov. 1, 2011 and March 31, 2012 (restrictions apply; price includes fuel surcharges, but not taxes). To book, go to Nycgo.com.
In 2010, New York welcomed 223,000 visitors from South Korea, a 10 percent increase over 2009, according to NYC & Co. Seoul, on the other hand, welcomed 653,000 visitors from the U.S. in 2010, a 7 percent increase over the year before.
"There’s outstanding potential to further grow the volume of travel between two of the world's great cities," NYC & Co. CEO George Fertitta said at a meeting in Seoul on Tuesday with Young-Gyu Kwon, the acting mayor of Seoul, and Korean Air Managing Vice President Kee-Hong Woo.
The deal marks the first time New York has partnered with a city in Asia, having done similar swaps in the past with London, Madrid and Sao Paulo, as well as stateside with Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles.
On Tuesday, NYC & Co. also launched a new Facebook page promoting New York to South Koreans at facebook.com/nycgo.kr.
More from Budget Travel: