Six in 10 Americans would cancel or avoid trips by air in the event of a government shutdown
WASHINGTON – A federal government shutdown is estimated to cost the U.S. travel economy as much as $140 million a day, according to new analysis for the U.S. Travel Association—underscoring the dire consequences of Congress failing to pass a short-term extension by September 30.
“Each day that passes will cost the travel economy $140 million, an unacceptable prospect that Congress must avoid before the clock runs out and the damages mount,” said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Geoff Freeman. “The federal government is already failing the traveler—a shutdown would be further proof of Washington’s inability to find reasonable solutions to problems that affect Americans nationwide.”
Other government-related travel issues—such as lengthy visitor visa interview wait times and passport and Global Entry processing delays—further constrain travel growth and spending.
SURVEY: AMERICANS WILL CANCEL OR AVOID AIR TRAVEL IN FACE OF SHUTDOWN
During a government shutdown, the U.S. air travel system is hampered by more flight delays, longer screening lines and setbacks in air travel modernization.
A new survey from Ipsos and U.S. Travel further underscores these steep negative consequences: Six in 10 Americans (60%) would cancel or avoid trips by air in the event of a shutdown.
Further, a large majority of Americans—regardless of political party—are not in favor of a government shutdown, especially from a travel perspective. More than eight in 10 of all Americans agree government shutdowns hurt the economy (81%), inconvenience air travelers (86%), impact businesses that depend on air travelers (83%) as well as tourist attractions like national parks, museums and local businesses (83%).
CONGRESS MUST PASS SHORT-TERM FAA EXTENSION
Coinciding with the federal budget deadline, the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) authorization is set to expire on September 30. Congress has yet to pass a full FAA reauthorization bill, so they must pass a temporary extension of FAA programs. Inaction on an FAA renewal bill would further compound challenges for travelers.
U.S. Travel Association is calling on Congress to pass a short-term extension by September 30 and continues to call on the Senate to act quickly on a long-term FAA reauthorization bill.
“This completely avoidable situation threatens livelihoods and jobs across the U.S. economy,” said Freeman. “Ultimately, travelers, businesses and workers will pay the price if lawmakers fail to enact a stop-gap funding bill.”
The U.S. travel industry, on the rebound after the crushing pandemic, generates $1.9 trillion in economic output, accounts for 2.9% of U.S. GDP, and employs 15 million people.
U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing the $1.2 trillion travel industry, an essential contributor to our nation’s economy and success. U.S. Travel produces programs and insights and advocates for policies to increase travel to and within the United States. Visit ustravel.org for information and recovery-related data.
HONOLULU –The West Maui communities of Kā‘anapali, Nāpili, Honokōwai, and Kapalua will fully reopen on Sunday, October 8, two months after the August 8 wildfires destroyed Lahaina, Governor Josh Green, M.D., declared in a statewide address.
Hawai‘i residents and visitors are encouraged to make travel plans to Maui and support the island’s businesses, restaurants, retail outlets, attractions, and accommodations. All previous restrictions for travel to West Maui communities north of Lahaina will be lifted October 8 and no one should be discouraged or reluctant to go and support the businesses and workers that rely on tourism in West Maui for their families’ livelihood.
“Beginning October 8, all travel restrictions will end and West Maui will be open to visitors again, so people from Hawaiʻi and around the world can resume travel to this special place and help it begin to recover economically,” Governor Green stated. “This difficult decision is meant to bring hope for recovery to the families and businesses on Maui that have been so deeply affected in every way by the disaster.”
Lahaina itself will remain fully closed to the public until further notice out of respect to the town’s residents. County, state, and federal emergency responders continue with efforts to identify victims and the missing, and conduct clean-up efforts of debris and hazardous materials resulting from the wildfires.
“No one in Hawai‘i will ever forget the tragedy that our friends, families, loved ones, and colleagues in Lahaina are enduring,” said Daniel Nāho‘opi‘i, Chief Administrative Officer of the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority. “The response from residents statewide and by people around the world to support Maui’s recovery has been incredible and inspiring. Now is the time for people everywhere to show their support for Maui by booking trips, making restaurant reservations, and frequenting Maui’s retail stores and attractions that support workers and their families.”
“Amidst the tragedy, the spirit of Maui remains strong. Beginning October 8th, all of Maui is open and welcoming visitors with the exception of Lahaina (see this map for reference). If you are considering visiting any of the Hawaiian Islands in the near future, including the accessible areas of Maui, please know that respectful travel is welcomed and encouraged, now more than ever,” the Hawaii Visitors Bureau stated.
Your visit will support Hawaiʻi’s economy and make a positive impact, especially when you are mindful:
• Visit with aloha and compassion. • Support local businesses. • Consider participating in unique volunteer opportunities throughout the islands. • Learn about the historical and cultural significance of Lahaina but stay away from the area as a means of respect for the people and places that have been lost during this devastating tragedy.
While relief efforts continue in West Maui, you can also make a donation to help communities and families recover through the Maui Strong Fund.
For the most updated information, visit Maui Travel Updates. “Mahalo for your support as we collectively mālama (care for) Maui.”
For the latest information on travel to the Hawaiian Islands, visit gohawaii.com.
City Winery has chosen the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) as one of three organizations it is supporting during Women’s History Month this year. City Winery is a performance venue, restaurant, and winery, with branches in cities across the country.
Throughout March, City Winery will host its inaugural “Fierce Light” initiative, honoring women and gender justice. It will donate a portion of proceeds from ticket sales and online wine purchases to WRC (womensrefugeecommission.org) and two other organizations, Sister Song and Sister Reach.
If you live in New York City, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Nashville, Philadelphia, or Hudson Valley (Montgomery, NY), you can support WRC by attending shows at your local City Winery. Shows will feature an eclectic mix of musicians and women thought leaders.
If you can’t attend a show, you can still support the organizations by buying a limited edition, custom-labeled wine online.
WASHINGTON D.C. – With new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showing staggering job loss to the hospitality and leisure industry, the American Hotel & Lodging Association today released a “Roadmap to Recovery,” calling on Congress to prioritize relief for hotel workers and small businesses in the next stimulus package. The April Jobs Report showed the hospitality and leisure industry was the hardest hit, losing 7.7 million jobs—nearly as many jobs as the next four sectors combined. (Click here to read AHLA’s letter to Congress.)
AHLA is urging Congress to provide immediate assistance in these four areas:
Help hotels retain and rehire employees by extending the Paycheck Protection Program, offering employees direct tuition assistance or tax credits, and expanding the Employee Retention Credit
Protect employees and guests through tax credits for cleaning equipment and personal protective equipment (PPE)
Keep hotel doors open by providing relief for hotel commercial mortgages and increasing the size and flexibility of PPP loans
Incentivize Americans to travel again when it’s safe with a new, temporary travel tax credit and restoring the entertainment business expense deduction
“The hospitality industry is in a fight for survival,” said Chip Rogers, president and CEO of AHLA. “We are grateful to the leadership of both parties during one of the most difficult health and economic challenges we have faced. We are urging Congress to do even more to help the hotel industry so that our small business hotel operators can keep the lights on and retain and rehire employees.”
COVID-19 continues to devastate the hotel industry: 2020 is projected to be the worst year on record for hotel occupancy, and experts estimate it will be at least 2022 before hotels return to their 2019 occupancy and revenue levels. So far, the impact of COVID-19 on the travel industry has been nine times worse than September 11. In a recent survey of AHLA members, more than 8 in 10 hotel employees said they have had to lay off or furlough workers. Only 37 percent have been able to rehire any staff through economic relief measures such as PPP.
With a presence in every congressional district in America, hotels are central to getting our economy back on track and supporting millions of jobs. Prior to the pandemic, hotels were proud to support one in 25 American jobs—8.3 million in total—and contribute $660 billion to U.S. GDP. A representative hotel with 100 occupied rooms per night supports nearly 250 jobs in the community and generates $18.4 million in guest spending at neighborhood shops and restaurants. Hotels also generate $186 billion in local, state, and federal taxes each year.
“While the hotel industry was one of the first affected by the pandemic, we have collectively stepped up to serve our communities during this public health crisis. We need Congress to continue to prioritize the industries and employees most affected by the crisis, so we can retain and rehire the people who power our industry, our communities and our economy,” concluded Rogers.
Click here to download the hotel industry’s Road Map to Recovery one-pager.
(Washington DC) –The cruise industry is an increasingly dominant player in the U.S.
tourism sector according to a new study from Cruise Lines International
Association (CLIA), the world’s largest cruise industry trade association. The CLIA
2018 Economic Impact Analysis found the cruise industry in the
U.S. had an economic impact of over $52.7 billion in total contributions in
2018 alone, marking an increase of over 10 percent since 2016.
increasing popularity of cruising to and from the United States is evident
throughout the report, as is the inextricable correlation between the
industry’s growth and its economic impact across the country. Nearly 13
million cruise passengers worldwide embarked from ports in the United States in
2018—an increase of nearly nine percent from 2016.
no doubting the enormity of the cruise industry’s contributions to the U.S. and
global economies. The 2018 Economic Impact Analysis highlights the incredible
impact the industry continues to have on American businesses and individuals,
as well as the growing popularity of cruising amongst passengers of all
nationalities and backgrounds,” said Kelly Craighead, CLIA’s president and CEO.
“There is simply no better way to experience the world, and the cruise industry
is proud to have such a positive impact on the people and communities we visit
here in the United States.”
increased embarkations come increased onshore spending. In 2018, cruise lines,
their passengers and crew spent a record $23.96 billion in the United States—a
33 percent increase since 2010. Additionally, 2018 saw a new peak in
the cruise industry’s U.S. expenditures, generating 421,711 jobs across
the United States and contributing more than $23.15 billion in wages and
salaries, a nearly 13 percent increase since 2016.
these numbers reflect the growing consensus cruising has evolved into a
mainstream choice for travelers of all means and backgrounds, as well as a
leader in the tourism sector. The cruise industry recognizes with growth comes
added responsibility to ensure the destinations we visit remain a welcoming and
beautiful place to both live in and visit for generations to come.
more information about the cruise industry, the full 2018 CLIA Economic
Impact Analysis, and details on the cruise industry’s economic impact in
each of the top ten states, please visit: CLIA 2018 Economic Impact
Economic Impact Analysis by the Numbers
U.S. Economic Impact: The U.S. cruise industry had an economic impact of over $52.7
billion in total 2018 contributions – marking an increase of
over 10 percent since 2016.
Direct Impact:$23.96 billion in direct purchases made by
passengers, crew, and cruise lines.
Indirect & Induced Impact: $28.7 billion in indirect supply purchases and merchant
payments, as well as induced economic benefits from cruise line and supplier
purchases of consumer goods and services.
in Embarkation: Nearly 13 million cruise passengers
worldwide embarked from ports in the United States in 2018—an increase of
nearly nine percent from 2016.
and California: With a total of nine cruise ports between them—accounted for 68
percent of the U.S embarkations in 2018. Meanwhile, embarkations from
the two cruise terminals in New York increased 12 percent since
2016 and ports in Galveston also experienced a 13 percent embarkation
increase in 2018 compared to 2016.
Onshore Spending: In 2018, cruise lines, passengers and crew spent a
record $23.96 billion in the United States—a 33
percent increase since 2010.
The cruise industry generated 421,711 jobs across the United
States and contributed more than $23.15 billion in wages and
salaries, a nearly 13 percent increase since 2016.
Top Ten States Benefitting
Economically from the Global Cruise Industry
Lines International Association (CLIA) is the world’s largest cruise industry
trade association, providing a unified voice and leading authority of the
global cruise community. The association has 15 offices globally with
representation in North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australasia. CLIA
supports policies and practices that foster a safe, secure, healthy and
sustainable cruise ship environment for the more than 30 million passengers who
cruise annually and is dedicated to promote the cruise travel experience. The
CLIA Community is comprised of the world’s most prestigious ocean, river and
specialty cruise lines; a highly trained and certified travel agent community;
and cruise line suppliers and partners, including ports & destinations,
ship development, suppliers and business services. The organization’s mission
is to be the unified global organization that helps its members succeed by
advocating, educating and promoting for the common interests of the cruise
community. For more information, visit www.cruising.org or follow Cruise Lines
International Association on CLIA Facebook and Twitter pages.
Lithuania – The
world’s first museum devoted to start-ups has opened in Vilnius, the capital of
Startup Museum hosts twelve stories of local startups that managed to reach global success. The list includes the first Lithuanian unicorn, pre-loved fashion marketplace Vinted (Kleiderkreisel), nanosatellite manufacturer Nanoavionics, image editing software developer Pixelmator, along with Trafi (Jelbi), Deeper, Bored Panda, Tesonet, Oberlo, CityBee, Brolis Semiconductors, MailerLite and CGTrader.
displayed startups come from a broad range of fields – from online platforms
and software to space exploration and laser manufacturing.
aim of the museum is to tell the untold stories of startups that not only found
their way to success but also made contributions to improving the business
culture within the city. Through the stories of individual startups, the
visitors will get to experience the drastic improvement that the startup scene
in Vilnius made in recent years, too.
a startup museum is a great way to highlight how welcoming and progressive our
city is, creating the needed environment for businesses to thrive,” says
Remigijus Šimašius, the mayor of Vilnius. “At the same time, the museum will
honour the brave entrepreneurs that are true ambassadors of Vilnius around the
globe. This museum is also a good reminder that it isn’t just ideas and
investments that matter – persistence, heart, and a strong team are as
startup highlighted in the museum is presented through its journey to success,
including the lessons learned and challenges conquered. Next to each company’s
timeline and story, visitors have a chance to see physical artefacts that each
startup sees as representations of their journey, work culture and values.
example, the pop culture magazine Bored Panda has a panda
costume on display to celebrate their company culture – which was worn by one
of the current employees when he came to apply for the job. While CGTrader,
the world’s largest source for stock and custom 3D models, are showcasing a
bucket that was used to collect water in the early days of the company when
they worked in an office with a leaky roof. Vinted’s exhibition
will feature, among other artefacts, a toy unicorn representing its status as a
first home-grown startup to reach EUR 1 billion in market valuation.
the museum, guests can also get familiar with the state of the startup
ecosystem in Vilnius and get informed about the upcoming startup-related events
Each year, the museum will add four additional Vilnius-based startups that made the most significant strides in that particular year.
The Startup museum was established by Go Vilnius, the official business development agency of Vilnius, together with a coworking space Talent Garden Vilnius.
are currently 35 startup-dedicated spaces in Vilnius: twelve startup incubators
and centres, eleven business accelerators and the same amount of investment
organizations, five sandboxes dedicated to fintech, energy-related and real
estate fields. Finally, the open data policy of the Vilnius city municipality
allows businesses to test their products by using real financial, procurement,
real estate, transport and other types of data.
Go Vilnius is
the official tourism and business development agency of the City of Vilnius.
The agency provides visitors, investors, relocating talent, entrepreneurs and
businesses with all the essential information they need to know about the
Lithuanian capital. Go Vilnius offers information on everything from real
estate to leisure activities in Vilnius, simplifying the process of travelling,
relocating to, or investing in Vilnius.
one issue I take exception to the courageous climate activist, Greta Thunberg:
travel – even airline travel – is not the enemy of the climate action crusade,
travel is its best ally. She may have taken two weeks to sail the Atlantic to
reach the United Nations Climate Action Summit, but the thousands of diplomats
and heads of state she scolded and shamed into action, could not.
“What would happen if we
stopped traveling, stopped flying? Would we save the planet or unleash a global
conservation crisis? There would be global conservation crisis,” asserted Costas
Christ, chairman of The TreadRight Foundation, a philanthropy created by The
Travel Corporation’s 42 brands, to preserve and protect the planet, people and
Christ, who came out of
the Wildlife Conservation Society, pointed to the three great forests on the
planet – New Guinea, Amazon Basin, Central African rainforest including Gabon. But
in the early 2000s, Gabon’s economy was dependent on mining and timber
Conservation Society went to Gabon’s president and said, “If you continue
mining, cutting trees, the party is over in 50 years, but if put aside area for
conservation, travelers will come, alleviate poverty and save the forest – your
great grandchildren will be able to make their livelihood here.
“With stroke of Gabon
President’s pen, he created 11 national parks, protecting 13 million acres –
Travel Matters,” Christ said. “Travel is
the alternative to exploitation – preserve and protect instead of poach and
“If travelers did not go to the African
continent, the future would be unrelenting poverty. Travel is hope,
Colombia, where The
Travel Corporation has introduced new travel programs, is one of the 30 places
on the planet which are the “Noah’s Ark of Life,” a biodiversity hot spot harboring
one out of 10 species.
“If we are able to help Colombia protect its natural
resources we will protect the second largest biodiverse place on the
“We make an impact when
travel supports conservation, protects wildlife and alleviates poverty. Travel
matters when it is planned, managed well, sustainable. Then magic happens – we
deliver on our promise to make the world a better place.
It is significant that
travel benefits the destinations, but travel also enriches individuals, in a
mutually virtuous circle.
What is wanderlust and why
do we seek out other places? Christ asks. Marco Polo understood. So did John
Steinbeck, who, in
his Pulitzer-Prize winning book, wrote:
is a person in itself; no two are alike.
And all plans, safeguards, policies and coercion are
We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip;
a trip takes us.
Mark Twain, who actually was a travel writer, wrote in “The
Innocents Abroad,” “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and
narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.
Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by
vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
traveled to meet the Dalai Lama, who travels constantly, to ask ‘Why travel?.’ “He said, ‘in ancient Tibetan ‘gropa’ is
the word for human being, but the literal meaning is ‘one who goes on
migrations.’ We define the essence of being human to travel – to travel is to
“We think of the word
‘progress’ as hitting goals, but to pro-gress is a kind of travel. In Middle English,
“progress” means “to go on a seasonal journey” – so success is a journey,
success is linked to travel.”
The TreadRight Foundation, a not-for-profit organization created 10 years ago as a joint initiative between The Travel Corporation’s (TTC) family of brands, takes a percentage of profit from 42 companies to make sure goes to projects that make a difference. TreadRight supports 55 projects in 280 communities in 26 countries in three basic categories: planet, people and wildlife.
TTC, a member of the World Travel & Tourism Council, is
joining in a commitment for the industry – which accounts for one in 10 jobs
around the world and accounts for 10% of the global economy, to become carbon
neutral by 2050. TTC will also take steps to eliminate plastics through its
supply chain, and reduce carbon emissions.
“We’re committed to be carbon neutral before 2050 and not through carbon offsets. Carbon is what’s destroying climate, not offsets,” Brett Tollman, Chief Executive, The Travel Corporation and Founder, The TreadRight Foundation. said at a reception marking TreadRight’s 10 years.
“We are at an unfortunate tipping point, where unless we careful, this industry will be the poster for all that’s bad,” he said. “We have the opportunity to make change, but we have to be courageous.”
But though travel –
particularly airline travel – does have a carbon cost (until the technologies
improve), not traveling would be far worse for the quest of saving the planet
and communities from the impacts of climate change and promoting a more just
Christ points to places devastated
by climate catastrophe that have rebounded because of tourism, communities and
cultures destroyed by war and conflict, like Bosnia and Croatia, rebuild and
thrive because of the economic support of travel dollars.
For example, working with the Jordan tourism Board, TreadRight
supports the Queen Noor Iraq Alamei, a
cooperative that employs women as potters and artisans – giving women jobs
outside the home but within the village. With TreadRight support, the
cooperative built up a gift shop and opened an Air BnB.
travel programs in Colombia help create a wildlife nursery and install solar
panels, while another program in Sierra Nevada, through Trafalgar, creates an opportunity
for visitors to be hosted by a family.
is an incredible gift. It has the ability to open our eyes to the unique
cultures and spellbinding beauty of the natural world. But with this gift comes
a responsibility – to protect the world as we know it. At TreadRight, our
mission is clear; to have a positive impact on the people and communities we
visit, to protect wildlife and marine life, and to care for the planet we call
Kielburger, the co-founder of WE charity, explained how Treadright’s family of
travel companies is partnering with We.org, which builds schools, promotes
sustainable agriculture, brings pure water to communities – to offer programs
in which travelers can immerse themselves into that community.
with ME to WE, travelers have the opportunity to visit three iconic
destinations: India, the Ecuadorian Amazon and Kenya. In conjunction with TTC,
guests can book ME to WE Immersive Volunteer Trip extensions on upcoming set
departure dates or as a requested custom trip. Travelers stay among local communities in comfortable
lodges, owned and operated by ME to WE. All meals, ground transfers,
transportation and local sightseeing excursions hosted by an expert facilitator
can run with the Masai, help build a school, see what it feels like to have to
carry water barrels on your back; stay in a family’s home in Ecuador; in India,
visit an elephant rescue preserve instead of riding on one. (See TreadRight.org site, https://www.TreadRight.org/trips/).
“Travel is a privilege,”
said Celine Cousteau, a documentary filmmaker and TreadRight Ambassador and
storyteller. “Experience places and people, become a part of who they are.
Travel fosters profound change. Travelers become storytellers. Traveling on an
airplane has a carbon footprint, yes, but the value it brings more than
compensates. Travel is an opportunity to
bring a thriving economy, conserve, preserve. Make a choice to do good and if
travel, make it count.”
TTC’s ‘Make Travel Matter’ Pledge
TreadRight has made
#maketravelmatter its mission and its theme and on this year’s World Tourism
Day, made this pledge:
“This World Tourism Day, Friday, September 27th, 2019, engaged citizens will examine the positive impact travel has on the globe and TreadRight is making its commitment public to Make Travel Matter,” the company stated.
Inspired by Palau’s First Lady, Debbie
Remengesau who introduced the Palau Pledge, every one of TTC’s 10,000 team
members and 42 companies worldwide are committing to make travel matter, with
its new official pledge standing to help protect people, planet and wildlife.
In celebration of World Tourism Day, all members of TTC’s family of brands will
use the opportunity to stand up and personally commit to share TreadRight’s
ethos as travelers, as travel providers and as members of the global travel
“Our Make Travel Matter Pledge is another step on our journey and an impactful one as it further solidifies our commitment to helping protect the destinations we work with, its communities and local wildlife,” Tollman said. “As responsible travelers, TreadRight’s ethos has become part of our company’s DNA and what we stand for, and we share our pledge with our guests as well as partners in hopes they will join us.”
MAKE TRAVEL MATTER PLEDGE
I will make my travel matter –
for our planet, for people and for wildlife.
When I explore this planet, I
will do my best to TreadRight.
I will refuse single use
plastics when I can and recycle what I cannot avoid.
When possible, I will offset my
When I meet new people, I will
honor their home as I do my own and do so in the spirit of diversity and
inclusion. I will purchase locally made items wherever possible and pay a fair
When I experience wildlife, I will do so in nature.
I will not ride animals that
ought not be ridden, nor support animal cruelty in any way.
Together, we will TreadRight
upon the earth – and we will make our travel matter.
is not the only entity that facilitates authentic, transformative, responsible travel
experiences – there is a whole travel industry subcategory, many represented by
Center for Responsible
Travel (responsibletravel.org), Global
Sustainable Tourism Council (gstcouncil.org), Earthcheck
(earthcheck.org) and the Rainforest Alliance (https://www.rainforest-alliance.org).
Report Finds 2018 Spending Supported 329,000 jobs in Hotels, Restaurants, Transportation, Recreation
WASHINGTON – It is so easy just to enjoy our national parks – our national heritage – and not realize that they are also a serious engine of economic activity, indeed a lifeline, for localities and the nation as a whole. As the summer vacation and travel seasons opens, U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt announced today that visitor spending in communities near national parks in 2018 resulted in a $40.1 billion benefit to the nation’s economy and supported 329,000 jobs.
According to the annual
National Park Service report, 2018 National Park Visitor Spending
Effects, more than 318 million visitors spent $20.2 billion in communities
within 60 miles of a park in the National Park System. Of the 329,000 jobs
supported by visitor spending, more than 268,000 jobs exist in the park gateway
“This report emphasizes
the tremendous impact the national parks have on our nation’s economy and
underscores the need to fulfill President Trump’s plan to rebuild park
infrastructure,” said Secretary
Bernhardt. “With 419 sites, and at least one in every state, our
national parks continue to provide visitors, both local and destination, with
innumerous recreational, inspirational, and world-class experiences.”
“National parks with
their iconic natural, cultural and historic landscapes represent the heart and
soul of America,” said National
Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith. “They are also a vital
part of our nation’s economy, especially for park gateway communities where
millions of visitors each year find a place to sleep and eat, hire outfitters
and guides and make use of other local services that help drive a vibrant
tourism and outdoor recreation industry.”
Economic benefits from
visitor spending increased by $2 billion and total output increased by $4.3
billion in comparison to 2017.
As a part of the report,
visitor surveys were conducted at 19 parks with the results indicating that
people spent more time in the parks, stayed longer in gateway communities and
spent more money during their visits.
Visitation varies across
the National Park System, from big parks like Blue Ridge Parkway to Grant Kohrs
Ranch National Historic Site in Montana. Blue Ridge attracted 14.6 million
people who spent more than $1 billion and supported more than 15,900 jobs.
Grant Kohrs Ranch drew more than 26,000 visitors who spent more than $1.5
million in the area and supported 25 local jobs.
Lodging expenses account
for the largest share of visitor spending totaling nearly $6.8 billion in 2018.
Food expenses are the second largest spending area with visitors spending $4
billion in restaurants and bars and another $1.4 billion at grocery and
economics report was prepared by economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas and Egan
Cornachione of the U.S. Geological Survey and Lynne Koontz of the National Park
Service. It includes information by parks and by states on visitor spending,
the number of jobs supported by visitor spending and other statistics.
Report authors also
produce an interactive tool that enables users to explore visitor
spending, jobs, labor income, value added, and output effects by sector for
national, state, and local economies. Users can also view annual, trend data.
For more state-by-state
information about national parks and how the National Park Service is working
with communities, go to http://www.nps.gov/[statename], for example: http://www.nps.gov/virginia.
National Park Visitor
Spending Contributions to the U.S. Economy 2012-18