In addition to football fans, local hotels will also be welcoming national media and NFL officials in town for much of the week. Additionally, the city will house the Baltimore Ravens prior to their game on Sunday.
"We had a great ‘regular season' here in Rhode Island, in terms of sports business," said John Gibbons, executive director of the Rhode Island Sports Commission, a division of the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (PWCVB), "but playoff fever is all around and it's a welcome boost to many businesses' bottom line."
"This is typically a slow time of year for the hospitality industry, so the big game up at Gillette this weekend should have a great impact on hotels, restaurants and other tourist-friendly places at a time when they could use the bump," Gibbons said.
The PWCVB has partnered with Green Airport in promoting Providence to the Baltimore area as a convenient and cost-effective option for fans travelling for the playoffs, running ads on Baltimore sports talk radio and distributing a press release in the Baltimore market. A page on the PWCVB website, GoProvidence.com, offers hotel, flight and dining options to football fans. Southwest Airlines offers non-stop service between Baltimore and TF Green Airport.
Once fans arrive, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) train service at the airport's InterLink provides easy connections to area hotels, restaurants and shops. MBTA also offers special game day service from downtown Providence right to Gillette Stadium. For more information on this service, please visit the MBTA page here.
The Rhode Island Sports Commission is a division of the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau whose mission is to enrich the Rhode Island economy and community through the attraction, promotion and development of sporting events and associated meetings. The Commission is the recipient of the 2011 Readers' Choice Award from Sports Events magazine and 2011 Special Recognition Award from the Rhode Island Tourism Division.