As the country celebrates National Travel and Tourism Week, Visit Tri-Cities reports that visitor spending in the Tri-Cities increased by more than $100 million in 2022. All told, visitors brought $595 million to local businesses last year.
“Visitor spending brings fresh revenue from outside of the area creating a positive economic cycle in our communities,” said Kevin Lewis, President and CEO of Visit Tri-Cities. “These revenues generate activity and enthusiasm in our communities. They create jobs, lower local taxes, promote long-term investment and improve our quality of life,” he said.
Travel serves as a catalyst for a productive U.S. economy and helps power the success of other industries. “The travel industry fuels every industry—our industry’s success is the nation’s success,” said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Geoff Freeman. The U.S. travel industry generated a $2.6 trillion economic output in 2022 and supported 15 million jobs, fueling communities, small businesses and working families across the country.
Statewide, visitor expenditures increased 24% to $22.1 billion in 2022. Direct state and local tax revenue increased 19.6% from 2021 to $3.1 billion, and tourism supported 221,394 direct and induced jobs in the state, a 10.5% increase over the previous year.
“The Tri-Cities and surrounding communities were built on the spirit of exploration and discovery,” said Lewis. “A unique blend of recreation, history and science are cradled in an intriguing landscape of vineyards, waterways and farmland, creating uncommon and unexpected opportunities for visitors and locals.”
According to the 2022 report from Tourism Economics, visitors spent $594.7 million in Benton and Franklin counties last year, generating nearly $60 million in State and local taxes. This influx of revenue energizes the local business economy and supports more than 5,700 jobs in the Tri-Cities – up 21% from 2022. The tax revenue generated by visitors helps offset taxes that residents would normally pay to fund police and fire, teachers and schools, the maintenance of our roadways and the beautification of our parks. “Thanks to visitor spending, local household taxes are reduced by almost $600 per household each year,” said Lewis. “In short, the visitor economy enhances quality of life that touches every single Tri-Citian.”
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the annual industry celebration of the contributions of the U.S. travel industry. Join Visit Tri-Cities in sharing and celebrating the value tourism holds for the local economy, businesses, and quality of life for residents during National Travel and Tourism Week, May 7-13, 2023!
Find ways to celebrate Tri-Cities Tourism at visittri-cities.com.
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