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Elevate Your Business

San Diego Tourism Authority’s Tourism Accelerator

For Businesses Owned by People of Color, LGBTQ+, Women and Veterans

The SDTA Tourism Accelerator: Putting DEI on a fast track

As part of our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in the tourism industry, the San Diego Tourism Authority has been honored to assist 10 area businesses annually through our new Tourism Accelerator program. The Accelerator offers a full package of support (valued at more than $10,000) to San Diego businesses operated by people of color, women, veterans or those who identify as LGBTQ+. Hear from the program’s inaugural cohort about what the Accelerator has done so far to rev up their businesses.

To be notified when applications are open for the next cohort, please complete this form.

A key to building a thriving tourism industry in San Diego is reflecting the diversity of the destination and promoting equity and inclusion. The Tourism Accelerator — the first of its kind — offered by the San Diego Tourism Authority, provides resources for businesses owned by people of color, women and veterans, and those in LGBTQ+ community. This new program offers services designed to help these businesses be more successful and better connected with the local tourism industry.

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Tourism Accelerator 

Accelerator Program Benefits

The Tourism Accelerator will offer participants a program of support valued at over $10,000:

  • Coaching and support in the areas of financial, legal support, labor and employment, marketing, digital business profiles, risk management and commercial real estate, as well as two free quarter-page ads in the San Diego Business Journal.*
  • Complimentary Membership in SDTA and free admission to select SDTA events as well as special access to SDTA senior staff, board members and program investors.
  • A voucher for a course through UC San Diego Extension.**
  • A $1,000 credit to use on SDTA's digital advertising platforms.
  • Connect with the Accelerator alumni program to network with previous cohorts.
  • Free advertising in brochure racks at over 450 locations in San Diego from Certified Folder.

Selection Criteria

  • Applicants must be tourism and hospitality businesses based in the San Diego region and owned by people of color, LGBTQ+, women or veterans.
  • Organizations must have operated for at least one year to qualify.
  • Business categories may be, but are not limited to, restaurants, retail, activities and attractions, museums, transportation, and meeting and event services.
  • Excluded businesses: Any type of accommodation, airline or cruise line.
  • Current or former Members of the San Diego Tourism Authority (and all affiliated organizations) are not eligible.

Selection Process

  • A diverse panel, comprised of program sponsors and the San Diego Tourism Authority board and staff, will review applications and select participants.
  • Aside from being tourism businesses owned by people of color, LGBTQ+, women or veterans, other selection criteria include: viability of the business model, business needs and commitment to community service.
  • Businesses not selected are eligible for a 50% discount on SDTA Membership for the current Membership term.

More Information


Applications for the 2024 cohort will open in the fall/winter of 2023. Please check back for updates. To be notified when applications are open for the next cohort, please complete this form.

Contact Info

*Current advertisers with the San Diego Business Journal are ineligible for the advertising benefit. Advertisements must run on or before December 31, 2023.
** Maximum value of the voucher is $500.00 towards the enrollment of one (1) class. There is no cash value. If the value of the course selected is below $500.00 there will be no refund on the balance.




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