Local News

NC tourism generates record visitor spending in 2016

Posted May 9

Fall in the NC mountains

— North Carolina Secretary of Commerce Anthony M. Copeland announced Monday that North Carolina tourism generated record visitor spending in 2016 with a total of $22.9 billion, a 4.3 percent increase from 2015.

“Nearly 50 million people from across the United States visited North Carolina destinations last year,” Copeland said. “The money they spent supported 218,340 jobs and more than 45,000 businesses.”

Tourism industry-supported employment topped 218,000 jobs to set another record for the state.

The research was commissioned by Visit North Carolina and conducted by the United States Travel Association.

Visitors spent nearly $63 million per day in North Carolina last year.

North Carolina Tourism Facts

• Visitors to North Carolina generated about $3.6 billion in federal, state and local taxes in 2016, a 4.8 percent increase from 2015.

• State tax receipts as a result of visitor spending rose 5.2 percent to nearly $1.2 billion in 2016.

• Local tax receipts from visitor spending grew 4.8 percent to $692.8 million in 2016.

• Direct tourism employment in North Carolina increased 3.2 percent to 218,340 people in the industry.


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  • Rhonda Arthur May 9, 3:33 p.m.
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    But wait. According to the left the bathroom bill was gonna tank our economy and nobody would wanna come here. Even with all the cancellations due to the bill we set a record. Wow.

  • Mary Meadows May 9, 3:22 p.m.
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    What happened to all of the people stating that HB2 was killing our tourism economy? According to numbers (which are facts NOT opinions - regardless of which side you stand on) it did not have the forecasted impact.

    I will say that I have seen various groups slant numbers to present them in the way they want them to be reflected so one should always look for unbiased sources.

  • Robert Dalton May 9, 1:55 p.m.
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    Hopefully, they all used the correct bathrooms when they visited.