ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Fears over COVID-19, the coronavirus, are causing some Orlando businesses to cancel conferences and events.
Major conventions are still on, but some conferences that bring thousands of people to Orlando have backed out.
In a news conference Monday, Orange County leaders worked to help sort fact from fiction about the coronavirus.
Local impacts of the virus are already being felt on a small scale, with some conferences outside the Orange County Convention Center canceling.
“There have been no cancellations at the center, but there have been some smaller ones at some of the hotels,” said George Augel, president and CEO of Visit Orlando.
For the larger groups still coming, Augel said Visit Orlando is constantly checking in with hotels, theme parks and health officials to make sure the message to tourists is consistent and accurate.
A spokeswoman for the Orlando International Airport said they have plans in place, including rerouting planes away from the jet bridges and terminal if there are any concerns about passengers on board.
According to Visit Orlando, most conferences they know have canceled so far have had a high number of international attendees.
Because no one group tracks all the conventions, it is not clear how many conferences may have canceled so far.
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