New York’s 50 Millionth Visitor

Scores of people visit New York City everyday. Last Friday, one British couple, Craig and Lucy Johnson, got the surprise of their lives when they found out that the city had named them its 50 millionth visitor.

According to the New York Times, the city’s tourism officials selected the couple because the U.K. is the largest source of visitors to New York and because of the Johnsons’ connection to the city — they met in the Big Apple 10 years ago.  The newlyweds were married at Rockefeller Center.

Craig & Lucy Johnson being feted as NYC's 50 millionth visitor, photo Earl Wilson, NYT
Craig & Lucy Johnson being feted as NYC's 50 millionth visitor, photo Earl Wilson, NYT

They were presented with a symbolic gold card and saluted by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The Johnsons also received a $10,000 gift card for this trip and a $10,000 package of gift cards to visit and spend money in famous stores and at Broadway shows again in 2012. NYC & Company, the city’s tourism office, will even pick up the tab for any taxes they incur on their purchases.

Of the 48.8 million people who visited New York City last year, 10.7 million of them were foreigners. By the end of the year, 50.2 million visitors will be recorded.


10 comments on “New York’s 50 Millionth Visitor

  1. Yup, they were! i didn’t get that from the first few articles I read. I picked it up in the NYT blog. Was very disappointed as based on the intital reports, I thought they had kept track and they were the 50 millionth, not that they just profiled them and decided based on where they came from and their connection to NYC (they got married at Rock Center). They did the morning shows this morning with the mayor.

  2. Now it makes sense that they were handpicked! Such nonsense. They really weren’t the 50 millionth visitor to the USA and that is not playing fair… but does this surprise me? Sadly not! Oh well, good for them, next!

  3. I felt so cheated. The first report I read made it seem like they were the 50 millionth, then I read the NYT blog. Thankfully, they had the courage to report the back story.

  4. I’m glad the NYT did dig a little deeper into the story, but the rest of the main street media is mum about it. It is such a travesty to make such hoopla over a fakola, handpicked choice and have everyone believe this couple actually crossed the entry port as #50,000,000! How convenient for them. I kept wondering about how the whole thing was determined. It figures they were trying to avoid the usual…. don’t get me started lady as this is ridiculously unfair. 🙁

  5. You should see the mayor on the morning shows with them. He should have been embarrassed to pass this off as something random when it was staged. Ridiculously unfair, is right!

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