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California Gov. Newsom Unveils Vaccine Vacation Incentive As State Funds Tourism Industry Revival

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- California is urging its citizens to help jump-start the economy on the eve of the state's reopening with a call to spend their vacation dollars in the state, while announcing help for the state's tourism industry and a new vacation incentive for people to get vaccinated.

Governor Gavin Newsom announced a series of investments in the travel and tourism industry at a press conference Monday at San Francisco's Ferry Building to highlight his proposed California Comeback Plan which would include $95 million to aid the state's tourism economy.

The state said it lost nearly half the 1.2 million jobs in the hospitality and tourism industries during the pandemic and with the funding it anticipates regaining more than 300,000 of those jobs within a year, an increase that would normally take multiple years, according to a press statement.

Newsom also encouraged Californians to visit or revisit the state's landmark destinations this summer and unveiled a new incentive for Californians to get vaccinated. The Vax for the Win California Dream Vacations giveaway is a drawing for one of six different vacation packages to Anaheim, Greater Palm Springs, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco.

In San Francisco, the vacation package winners will receive a five-night stay at the Hotel Nikko in Union Square, meals at La Mar, Jaranita, Wilder, Westwood and One Market and four tickets to a San Francisco Giants game at Oracle Park.

Winners selected will also receive $2,000 to offset travel expenses.

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"From California's coastlines to our theme parks to our breath-taking national forests, our state's diverse terrain and unique communities make us the envy of the world when it comes to tourism," said Newsom in a prepared statement. "As we move forward to a post-pandemic life, our tourism sector is expected to come roaring back – making us, once again, a global leader in hospitality and leisure."

Beginning on Tuesday, the state's reopening means hotels, restaurants, wineries, bars, live music venues, cardrooms, breweries, museums, zoos, retail centers, family entertainment centers and aquariums are open without capacity restrictions. All state and national parks and beaches will also to reopen.

"This stimulus funding will help get hard-working Californians safely back to work and the tourism sector reopened," said North Coast state Sen. Mike McGuire in a press statement. "It will be a massive shot in the arm to the Golden State's economy and help thousands of tourism-based businesses in every corner of California open their doors, rehire tens of thousands of employees and put out the welcome mat to travelers."

The California vacation drawing will be held July 1, with all Californians aged 18 and older who are at least partially vaccinated being eligible to win

  • Discover the Best of Anaheim package for four
  • Greater Palm Spring Luxury package for two
  • Premium Los Angeles Experience for four
  • San Diego Beach Dream Vacation for four
  • San Diego Downtown Dream Vacation for four
  • San Francisco "Our Gate Is Open" Welcome Package for four

"These epic vacations are just a sample of the endless variety of experiences California has to offer," said Caroline Beteta, President & CEO of Visit California in a prepared statement. "The state's travel industry is rolling out the red carpet to travelers. With COVID-19 at record low rates in the state, now is the time to travel to California."

Californians who have not gotten vaccinated yet are encouraged to go to or call (833) 422-4255 to schedule their appointment, or go to to find a walk-in clinic in their county.


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