Town in Southern California to pay tourists to visit

Stormy Vineyard
Posted at 1:15 PM, Feb 05, 2021

A California town near Santa Barbara wants to pay tourists to visit their city to help boost their community amid the pandemic.

According to CNN, the City of Santa Maria created the program "Visit Santa Maria Valley" due to California Gov. Gavin Newsom's announcement in December that the state was going on a second lockdown due to rising cases of COVID-19.

The program would pay tourists $100 in a gift card to travel and stay there for a minimum two-night stay at one of the many hotels in the area.

The promotion began Thursday and runs until March 31.

In a press release, Jennifer Harrison, director of tourism for Visit Santa Maria Valley, described the town of 100,000 people as "less crowded than other California destinations" that "offers more for less to budget-conscious travelers during a time of economic rebound," KSBY reported.

According to the website, the offer is sold out, but you can still join the waitlist.

Santa Maria Valley is about an hour and a half north of Santa Barbara.