National Tourism & Travel Week – Travel Matters to our Economy

May 3, 2019

Contributed by Diana Thompson
Executive Director, Miami County Visitors & Convention Bureau.

Today, Sunday, May 5th, is the beginning of National Tourism Week across America. It’s an annual tradition for the US travel community and is the time when travel and tourism professionals across the country unite to celebrate the value travel holds for our economy, businesses and personal well-being.

Today, our blog begins with understanding the importance of tourism to a local community.

The Miami County Visitors Bureau released statistics in 2018 detailing the impact of tourism in the Miami County area for the year 2017.  These statistics were a result of an integrated consumer-based research study spear-headed by Tourism Ohio and conducted by Tourism Economics and Longwoods International.  The Miami County Visitor Bureau was one of 50 county/city convention and visitor bureaus, cities and economic development organizations that took part in this important study for Ohio.

“Direct visitor spending and employment figures are essential factors to consider when evaluating the importance of tourism to our economy,” states Diana Thompson, Executive Director of the MCVCB.  Direct visitor spending is the financial input made by consumers into the local economy for tourism-related (only) purchases such as lodging, food, gas, shopping, etc.  “By contributing to our quality of life, leisure travelers play an important role in shaping our business climate,” continues Thompson.

According to this report, Miami County’s direct sales impact was $172.6M in 2017.  The report also indicates that tourism directly supported 2,413 tourism-related jobs.

The methodology used to prepare this report included:

  • a survey of travelers conducted by Longwoods International
  • STR (Smith Travel Report)data on hotel metrics including room demand, revenues, and occupancy rates
  • Statistics Canada data on spending in Ohio,
  • Sales tax data on lodging, retail, recreation sectors available from the Ohio Department of Taxation and
  • Local lodging tax data collected directly from the counties.

Investing in tourism promotion stimulates visitor demand, which in turn generates tax revenue benefiting local residents. Lawmakers and community leaders who understand and invest in the value of travel are able to reduce the tax burden on their constituents and are in a more favorable financial position to fund essential services that make their communities stronger.

States, destinations and communities across the country rely on travel—and traveler spending—for economic development, job creation and tax revenues. The travel industry is a significant economic driver in every congressional district across the country. Within 344 out of 435 congressional districts (79%), the travel industry was among the top seven largest employers among all private industries in 2016.

Travel spending generated $165 billion in total tax revenue, including $76 billion in state and local tax revenue, in 2017. Without these revenues, each U.S. household would pay $1,300 more in taxes every year. This is pure profit for a local economy.

For Miami County travel information, please contact the MCVCB at (937) 339-1044 or visit our website at

#TravelMatters #nntw19