Visitor Information for McAllen, Texas and Corpus Christi, Texas

Part
01
of seven
Part
01

Demographics - Visitor to McAllen, Texas

While there was no publicly available information on the demographics of visitors to McAllen, we were able to obtain potentially useful demographics of Rio Grande Valley nature visitors, Winter Texans, and visitors to the state of Texas. Rio Grande Valley nature visitors are an average of 47.41 years and are likely to have bachelors-or-higher degrees.

NATURE VISITOR DEMOGRAPHICS

  • The McAllen area, placed in the heart of Rio Grande Valley, is the "most productive birding location in North America" and home to some 540 bird species.
  • According to a 2011 survey of nature tourism visitors, the demographics of the off-peak travelers to Rio Grande Valley is as follows:

Age

  • The average age of nature tourists visiting Rio Grande Valley is 47.41 years.

Gender

  • Women comprise 50.5% of all tourists and men comprise 49.5%.

Education Level

  • The breakdown of education levels of visitors:
    • "Less than high school": 0.5%
    • High school: 9.5%
    • "Technical/vocational school/junior college": 13.2%
    • Undergraduate degree: 40.5%
    • Graduate degree: 36.3%

Annual Household Income

  • The breakdown of household income of visitors:

WINTER TEXAN DEMOGRAPHICS

  • In 2017-18, 106,000 individuals migrated to Texas for the winters. As McAllen is as far down south as the southern-most tip of Florida, and since it is a low-cost destination, many individuals migrate there for the winter.
  • The demographics of the respondents of "Robert C Vacker College of Business and Entrepreneurship Business & Tourism Research" Center's 2017-2018 survey of "Winter Texans" is as follows:

Age

  • The average age of survey respondents in 2018 was 72.3 years.

Gender

  • Survey respondents were more likely to be women (57.2%).

Race

  • Nearly all (97%) of survey respondents were white.

Marital Status

  • The majority (84.6%) of survey respondents were married, 9.8% were widowed, 3.1% were divorced and 2.4% were single.

Education Level

  • The breakdown of education levels of survey respondents:
    • "Less than high school diploma": 1.4%
    • High school graduate: 25.6%
    • "Some college, no degree": 40.1%
    • Bachelor degree: 13.7%
    • "Graduate or professional degree": 19.1%

Income

  • The average annual household income of survey respondents was $64,500.
  • The breakdown of visitors by income range:
    • <$20,000: 2.2%
    • $20,000-$29,999: 7.7%
    • $30,000-$39,999: 10.2%
    • $40,000-$49,999: 16.2%
    • $50,000-$59,999: 18.1%
    • $60,000-$69,999: 11.7%
    • $70,000-$79,999: 10.9%
    • $80,000-$99,999: 11.5%
    • $100,000-$149,999: 8%
    • $150,000: 3.5%

Employment

  • Nine in ten (91.9%) of survey respondents were retired.

Location

  • The top states from where survey respondents migrated: "Minnesota (16.3%), followed by Iowa (9.7%), Wisconsin (8.8%), Illinois (7.7%), Missouri (5.7%), Michigan (6.8%) and Nebraska (3.0%)".

TEXAS VISITOR DEMOGRAPHICS

Age

  • The average age of visitors to Texas was 48.2 years in 2017.
  • The breakdown of visitors by age group:
    • 18-34 years old — 24.5%
    • 35-49 years old — 29.3%
    • 50-64 years old — 27.5%
    • 65+ years old — 18.7%   

Employment

  • In 2017, two in three (66.3%) visitors to Texas were employed.
  • One in five (21.3%) visitors were retired and one in eight (12.3%) were unemployed.

Marriage and Family

  • In 2017, two in three (66.8%) visitors to Texas were married; 21.9% were never married, and 11.4% were divorced.
  • Among the 2017 visitors to Texas, 35.2% (one in three) had children in their households and two in three (64.8%) had no children living at home.
  • The average size of a visiting group to Texas in 2017 was 1.79 persons.

Income

  • The average household income of visitors to Texas was $95,537 in 2017.
  • The breakdown of visitors by income range:
    • Under $25,000: 10.1% 
    • $25,000 — $49,999: 21.6%
    • $50,000 — $74,999: 15.5%  
    • $75,000 — $99,9999: 16.4%
    • $100,000 — $149,999: 19.6%
    • $150,000 or more: 16.7%

Gender

  • In 2017, 27.7% of visitors to Texas were single men and 21.3% were single women.
  • Couples (one male and one female adult) comprised 27.2% of visitors to Texas and 11.9% of visitors were couples with children.
  • Two male or two female adults constituted 7.4% of the visitors to Texas and three or more adults represented 4.5% of the visitors to Texas.

Geography

  • In 2018-19, the top states in the US from which visitors to Texas originated were "Louisiana, Oklahoma, California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, New York, and Colorado".
  • The top nations from which visitors to Texas originated were "Mexico, Canada, the United Kingdom, China, Germany, Australia, and Brazil".

Occupation

  • Individuals who visited for business purposes represented one in five (20.1%) of all visitors to Texas in 2017.
  • Among those visitors, 9.3% visited for meetings (4.4% for seminars, 1.9% for conventions, and 3.1% for other group meetings).
  • The remaining 10.8% of business travelers visited Texas for transient reasons: consulting or client services (2.9%), sales and purchasing (1.6%), construction and repair (1.2%), government and military (1.0%), inspection and audit (0.9%), and other business (3.1%).

Research Strategy

In order to fulfill this request, we searched through the City of McAllen and McAllen tourism websites, travel and tourism reports, and media sources; however, we were unable to find the required demographic information in these sources. We then tried to determine the demographics of top attractions (birding) in McAllen and came across a dated report by the US Fish and Wildlife Service that provided the demographics of off-peak, non-local nature tourists to the Rio Grande Valley. Additionally, we also found demographic details of Winter Texans and visitors to Texas.
Part
02
of seven
Part
02

Demographics - Visitor to Corpus Christi, Texas

The average traveler to Corpus Christi is 45 years old, employed and has an average household income of $72,672. These and other details are outlined below.

Age

  • According to the latest publicly available report from the Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB), the average age of visitors to Corpus Christi is 45 years old.
  • 31% of visitors to Corpus Christi are between the ages of 18 and 34 years.
  • 29% of visitors are aged between 35 and 49 years old.
  • 28% of visitors are aged 50 to 64 years old.
  • 12% of visitors are senior travelers aged 65 years and above.
  • Visit Corpus Christi TX.org reported that 74% of visitors to Corpus Christi are from Texas.
  • The organization also reported that Corpus Christi's target market visitors come from San Antonio, Houston, the Coastal Bend, Dallas and Fort Worth area, and Rio Grande Valley.
  • The average age of the intrastate Texan traveler is 49.4 years old.

Income Level

  • Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) reports that the average household income of Corpus Christi visitors is $72,672.
  • 24% of visitors have a household income range of $50,000 to $74,999.
  • Another 24% of visitors have a household income range of $25,000 to $49,999.
  • 23% of visitors have a household income exceeding $100,000.
  • 15% of visitors have a household income range of $75,000 to $99,999.
  • Another 15% of visitors have a household income range of under $25,000.
  • The average household income of the intrastate Texan traveler is $101,834.

Employment

  • Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) reports that visitors to Corpus Christi are mostly employed.
  • 69% of visitors are employed.
  • 17% of visitors are not employed.
  • 14% of visitors are retired.
  • The average intrastate Texan traveler is also employed (68.6%).

Marital Status

  • The average intrastate Texan traveler to Corpus Christi is married.
  • 67.8% of visitors are married.
  • 20.9% of visitors have never married.
  • 11.4% of visitors are divorced or widowed.

Children in Household

  • The average intrastate Texan traveler to Corpus Christi has no children in their household.
  • 66.2% of visitors have no children in their household.
  • 33.8% of visitors have children in their household.

Additional Information


Research Strategy

To provide the demographic data of the average visitor to Corpus Christi, we looked at annual reports and research compilations from the city and state tourism boards as well as other related resources. These included the Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB), Travel Texas, CCTexas, Texas Travel Industry Association, and Visit Corpus Christi TX.org among others. The latest publicly available resource we found directly addressing the query was the CVB report from 2014 which was not further updated. The latest report from Visit Corpus Christi TX.org also dated 2015 and did not include any visitor demographic data.

The CVB report provided only 3 demographic data (age, household income, and employment). To provide additional demographic points we employed a triangulation approach based on the Visit Corpus Christi TX.org statement that majority of visitors to Corpus Christi originate from Texas. We looked for a Texan intrastate traveler/visitor demographic profile and found the Texas Destinations 2018 report posted by Texas' Prairies & Lakes Tourism board. The report is prepared for The Office of the Governor, Economic Development & Tourism Division and included 5 demographic data points for the intrastate Texan traveler in general. We applied these to Corpus Christi's visitors and included it in our findings above. Therefore, the average traveler to Corpus Christi is 45 years old, employed and has an average household income of $72,672. Intrastate Texan travelers are also mostly married and have no children in their household.
Part
03
of seven
Part
03

Special Attractions - Corpus Christie, Texas

USS Lexington, Padre Island National Shore, Texas State Aquarium, Texas Surf Museum, and Selena Museum are key attractions in the city of Corpus Christi, Texas. The requested information about the attractions is presented below.

USS Lexington

Padre Island National Shore

  • A direct link to the official website can be found here.
  • Padre Island is located at 20420 Park Road 22, Corpus Christi.
  • It is open all the year round.
  • Out of 1818 reviews on TripAdvisor, 70% have rated Padre Island National Museum as excellent, thus making it a key attraction.

Texas State Aquarium

  • A direct link to the official website can be found here.
  • Texas State Aquarium is located at 2710 N. Shoreline Blvd, Corpus Christi.
  • It is open all the year round.
  • A 4/5 rating after 2,425 reviews on TripAdvisor makes Texas State Aquarium a key attraction. 53% of the reviewers rate it as excellent.

Texas Surf Museum

  • A direct link to the official website can be found here.
  • Texas Surf Museum is located at 309A N. Water Street, Corpus Christi.
  • It is open Tuesday to Sunday all the year round.
  • Texas Surf Museum is a key attraction based on visitors' reviews. 48% of the reviewers rate it as excellent with a 4/5 overall rating on TripAdvisor. It is also the only surf museum in Texas.

Selena Museum

  • A direct link to the website can be found here.
  • Selena Museum is located at 5410 Leopard Street, Corpus Christi.
  • The site is open Monday to Friday, all the year round.
  • Selena Museum is a key attraction based on visitors’ reviews. 60% of the reviewers on TripAdvisor rate it as excellent with a 4.5/5 overall rating.








Part
04
of seven
Part
04

Special Attractions - McAllen, Texas

Basilica Of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle - National Shrine, Quintan Mazatlan, Old Hidalgo Pumphouse Museum and World Birding Center, International Museum of Art & Science (IMAS), and Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge are some of the key attractions in the city of McAllen, Texas.

Attraction #1

Attraction #2

  • Date: It was constructed in 1935
  • Why it is considered a special attraction: Quintan Mazatlan is mentioned in almost all reputable travel guides, articles, and blogs such as Trip 101, Trip Advisor, and Top-Rated.online among others as one of the best places one must visit while in McAllen. It also has a rating of 4.7 after 492 Google reviews.

Attraction #3

  • Date: It was built in 1909

Attraction #4

  • Date: It was chartered on June 2, 1967, under the laws of the state of Texas
  • Why it is considered a special attraction: IMAS is a Smithsonian Affiliate with 4,500 folk art and textile objects, 1,500 fine artworks that date back to the 16th century, and more than 2,000 natural history and geology specimens. It has been listed in reputable travel guides, articles, and blogs such as Trip 101, Trip Advisor, and Top-Rated.online among others as one of the best places one must visit while in McAllen and has a rating of 4.4 after 505 Google reviews.

Attraction #5

  • Date: It was established in 1943
  • Why it is considered a special attraction: Santa Ana has a 4.60 rating after 572 Google reviews and is listed in sources like Top-Rated.online among others as one of the best places one must visit while in McAllen.

Part
05
of seven
Part
05

Online Digital Tactics - McAllen, Texas

Some online/digital marketing tactics that McAllen, Texas employs to attract visitors to their city and attractions are the Office of Communications Department and the Explore McAllen platform.

Office of Communications Department

  • The Office of Communications distributes press material and works collaboratively with all media, including local, regional, national, international, and also hosts McAllen News.
  • It is also responsible for handling the city’s official social media sites and assisting with all publicity initiatives for departments and elected officials.
  • Additionally, the Office of Communications promotes the city of McAllen to its citizens, the media and throughout the state of Texas and beyond.
  • One of the success metrics on its use in the city is that it won three Awards of Excellence, judged by Texas municipal officers, for its talent and dedication to boost the city of McAllen.
  • The three awards were: Best Media Relations -2017 McAllen Holiday Parade, Communications Planning — 2018 Bond elections and Best use of Unplanned Social Media — 2018 June Flood.

The Explore McAllen Platform

  • The city of McAllen, Texas also uses Explore McAllen, which is a platform that acts as a source of information related to activities they can do in McAllen such as entertainment, restaurants, events, art, culture, dining, shopping and more.
  • Explore McAllen has its website as well as shared media pages of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter that it uses to attract visitors to McAllen and its attractions.
  • The city employs the use of Explore McAllen as an online tactic by regularly posting things that keep people updated on events and things to do as well as anything that is going on in McAllen.
  • The success metric for the use of Explore McAllen in the city is that its Facebook page has attracted over 28K followers and over 27K likes, while its Instagram has over 15.9K followers, with the Twitter version having over 10.2K followers.
Part
06
of seven
Part
06

Online Digital Tactics - Corpus Christi, Texas

The City of Corpus Christi in Texas uses mainly website marketing and social media marketing to attract visitors and promote its attractions. Its website marketing efforts include search engine optimization, content marketing, website redesign, and microsite creation, while its social media marketing efforts include social media advertising on Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger and content publication on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest.

Website Marketing

  • Website marketing pertains to the process through which an organization promotes its website. With the website being one of the crucial digital marketing channels, the primary objective of a website marketing initiative is to increase the number of website visits.
  • The City of Corpus Christi in Texas uses its Visit Corpus Christi website as its key digital marketing channel. Visit Corpus Christi is the marketing arm or destination marketing organization of the city, and the Visit Corpus Christi website serves as the city’s official tourism or travel information website.
  • Through the Visit Corpus Christi website, the city informs potential visitors of what the city has to offer in terms of attractions, things to do, accommodations, events, dining options, and deals. It also offers safety information, tips for enjoying the city, and a booking engine through which visitors can book hotels.
  • The city uses several website marketing strategies to increase visits to its website. The LinkedIn profiles of both Claudia Huerta, Visit Corpus Christi’s director of digital content, and Emily Zertuche, Visit Corpus Christi’s digital content designer and strategist, show that search engine optimization, content marketing, and microsites are being employed and that content on the website is being optimized to ensure the website appears high on the list of search results.
  • Search engine optimization efforts appear successful as the Visit Corpus Christi website appears on the first page of search results for Corpus Christi, Texas, and is third on the list of search results.
  • SEMrush, a web analytics provider, also shows that organic traffic to the website has increased from 11,967 in January 2012 to 217,784 in February 2020.
  • Visit Corpus Christi’s website redesign also won an award in the 2015 Adrian Awards, with Visit Corpus Christi being one of the Silver awardees.

Social Media Marketing

  • Social media marketing pertains to an organization’s use of social media channels to connect with its audience. It involves posting content, engaging followers, analyzing results, and running ads. Organizations use social media marketing mainly to build their brands, drive traffic to their websites, and increase sales.
  • The social media marketing efforts of the City of Corpus Christi in Texas can be seen in the way the city, through its marketing arm, has built its Visit Corpus Christi social media profiles. Visit Corpus Christi has a presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest and is quite active on these platforms as can be seen in the frequency with which it posts content, events, and promotions. It is listed as well on Tripadvisor, which has recently rebranded itself as a social media platform.
  • Visit Corpus Christi runs a total of 32 ads across Facebook’s social media platforms (i.e., Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger). Some ads have been running since November or December 2019.
  • Visit Corpus Christi’s most effective social media channel to date appears to be Facebook, as it is Visit Corpus Christi's social media account with the highest number of followers. It has 370,490 followers on Facebook. In contrast, it only has 7,434 followers on Twitter, 709 subscribers on YouTube, and 450 followers on Pinterest.
  • On Facebook, where it uses plenty of imagery and videos to entice people to visit Corpus Christi, Visit Corpus Christi has 375,536 people liking it, and it has a high rating of 4.5 out of 5 based on 3,544 reviews.
Part
07
of seven
Part
07

Visitor Information - McAllen, Texas, Corpus Christi, Texas, and Laredo, Texas

Corpus Christi's main visitors come from other cities of Texas for leisure and to enjoy the attractions, traveling an average of 185.56 miles and staying 2.04 days. McAllen's visitors come from Mexico for tourism and investment, traveling an average of eight miles and staying an average of 4.66 days while Laredo's visitors, also from Mexico, stay 7.1 nights, traveling 1.2 miles for business and leisure.

McAllen, Texas

  • McAllen receives 18 million visitors per year. Most of them come from Mexico for tourism and investment.
  • The distance traveled from Mexico's border is eight miles, and its only a two-hour car drive from Monterrey and Reynosa, Mexico, which are the domiciled locations of the main visitors.
  • Visitors come to shop in the McAllen area, make business, promote trade and manufacturing services, invest in with commercial, industrial, and economic projects, and enjoy the amenities.
  • 23.5% also come to McAllen is to explore its nature, as the area is famous for having more than 500 bird species, especially from May to June. As the second most important bird-watching spot in North America, it generates $463 million per year from nature tourism.
  • Visitors stay an average of 4.66 days or from five to seven days.

Corpus Christi, Texas

  • Corpus Christi receives an average of 8 million people every year. Most visitors come from San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, the Coastal Bend, and the Rio Grande Valley.
  • The distance traveled to Corpus Christi by visitors coming from San Antonio was 144 miles; from Houston, 208 miles; from the Coastal Blend, 2.2 miles; from Dallas, 410.9 miles; and Rio Grande Valley, 162.7 miles.
  • The main traveling reasons are to enjoy the food, accommodations, services, shop, recreational activities like arts and entertainment, and to fuel their transportation.
  • Nature tourism to see the birds, leisure tourism to explore the Gulf Coast beaches, and the islands of Padre and Mustang are some activities performed by travelers.
  • On average, visitors stay 2.04 days in Corpus Christi.

Laredo, Texas

  • Laredo received one million visitors in 2018, generating $570 million from tourism, and the number increases year over year.
  • Most of Laredo's visitors come from Mexico since Americans have been warned not to visit Nuevo Laredo due to the presence of the Zetas gang in the area.
  • The distance traveled by visitors from Mexico's border to Laredo is 1.2 miles, plus any additional distance to different Mexican cities.
  • Shopping is the number one reason to visit the city, the other is nature tourism, to watch the birds.
  • In 2015, the city reported 1,206,798 leisure visitors and 438,867 business visitors.
  • In 2017, Laredo visitors spent $568 million on accommodations to stay in the city.
  • The average price of a night in Laredo is $80.

Research Strategy

To determine the visitors' information from the cities of McAllen, Corpus Christi, and Laredo, we began looking for the most recent tourism and economy reports from the official city websites and respective government departments. Additionally, we searched on reports from the State of Texas. Unfortunately, in most cases, the most recent reports available in the updated websites were older than 2 years. In these cases, we incorporated the latest official information available, even if it was older.

We also checked in tourism blogs, magazines, and industry websites from the three cities for more information and the most recent data.

Calculations

Average Distance Traveled by Visitors in Corpus Christi

To calculate the average distance traveled by the visitors of Corpus Christi, since we had five locations of origin, we determined the distance from each location to Corpus Christi in miles, and then calculated the average of them all, as follows:

The distance traveled to Corpus Christi by visitors coming from San Antonio was 144 miles; from Houston, 208 miles; from the Coastal Blend, 2.2 miles; from Dallas, 410.9 miles; and Rio Grande Valley, 162.7 miles.

(144 miles + 208 miles + 2.2 miles + 410.9 miles + 162.7 miles)/5 = 185.56 miles is the average traveled by visitors to Corpus Christi.

Average Length of Stay in Laredo

In 2018, there was an average of one million visitors in Laredo who generated approximately $568 million in accommodations booking, assuming the revenue remained similar between 2017 and 2018, as indicated the trend in the last 23 years.

The average cost of night accommodation in Laredo is $80. We used this information to calculate the average number of days that visitors stay.

First, we divided the total spent on accommodations by visitors between the number of visitors: $568 million / 1 million visitors = $568 was the average spent on accommodation per visitor.

We divided this between the cost per night to determine the average number of nights:
$568 / $80 = 7.1 nights. This indicates that the average length of stay by Laredo visitors is 7.1 nights or 8 days.
Sources
Sources

From Part 01
Quotes
  • "The McAllen area is the most productive birding location in North America and people visit from all over the globe to see some of the bird species that can be found nowhere else in the entire country. In this relatively small area, 540 bird species and over 330 butterfly species have been recorded to date on literally dozens of birding hotspots that dot the region. There are also fine golf courses that are open year round with very reasonable green fees."
  • "McAllen also offers plenty of America’s best-known hotel chains and restaurants, as well as hundreds of local specialty dining establishments.The arts and nightlife are also thriving in McAllen. You’ll find myriad live music venues, Broadway shows, art galleries, museums, and much more."
  • "Imagine an area warmed by sub-tropical breezes and complemented by the spicy charms of Historic Old Mexico. Now imagine all that served up on a Texas platter overflowing with a smorgasbord of outdoor pleasures year round. McAllen is just that. Nestled in the heart of Texas’ southernmost region, the Rio Grande Valley, McAllen is just a Texas two-step from Mexico’s front door. And, because the area is as far south as the tip of Florida (but with a much lower cost of living), the weather is ideal, even in the middle of the winter, for outdoor sports and recreation."
Quotes
  • "McAllen is also home to a large group of seasonal residents who, at an average age of 72.3, contrast starkly with the younger inhabitants of the metro and the Rio Grande Valley. These “Winter Texans” come primarily from midwestern U.S. states and Canada to find a more temperate climate and low cost of living. The approximately 106,000 migrants spent $528 million locally in 2017–18."
From Part 02
Quotes
  • "Demographic Profile of Visitors Age (Average) 45 years 18-34 31% 35-49 29% 50-64 28% 65+ 12%"
  • "Household Income (Average) $72,672 Under $25,000 15% $25,000-$49,999 24% $50,000-$74,999 24% $75,000-$99,999 15% $100,000+ 23%"
  • "Employment Employed 69% Retired 14% Not Employed 17%"
Quotes
  • "About 74 percent of area visitors are from Texas."
Quotes
  • "Highlights of Corpus Christi Tourism: - 2008 saw 7.2 million visitors (person trips to the metro area) - About 17 million visitor-days (average 2.3 days per trip)"
  • "- Average party size of 2.3 - 22% visitors go to beaches/waterfront, 20% sightseeing, and 8% hunting/fishing"
Quotes
  • "Average Age 49.4 18-34 Years 21.4% 35-49 Years 29.5% 50-64 Years 29.4% 65+ Years 19.7%"
  • "Employment Employed 68.6% Retired 20.4% Not Employed 11.0%"
  • "Average HH Income $101,834 Under $25,000 7.7% $25,000-$49,999 21.5% $50,000-$74,999 16.7% $75,000-$99,999 16.7% $100,000-$149,999 19.7% $150,000+ 17.7%"
  • "Marital Status Married 67.8% Never Married 20.9% Divorced/Widowed 11.4%"
  • "Children in Household Yes 33.8% No 66.2%"
Quotes
  • "The travel industry continued to grow for the 5th consecutive year at both the local and state levels. Corpus Christi hosted over 8.65 million visitors, an increase of nearly 2% over the preceding fiscal year."
  • "Visitors to our city traveled from the top five target markets of: San Antonio, Houston, the Coastal Bend, Dallas/Ft. Worth and the Rio Grande Valley, spending a total of $1.3 billion—an increase of over 8% from 2013."
From Part 03