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Wake County sets record tourism numbers for 2014

Posted June 24, 2015

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— The Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau reported Wednesday that 14.3 million domestic travelers visited the Raleigh area in 2014, a 7.7 percent increase from 2013.

Tourists also reportedly contributed $2.2 billion in spending to the local economy. D.K. Shifflet & Associates and Tourism Economics, independently contracted by the GRCVB, estimated tourism spending.

“To have another record-breaking year for tourism in Wake County is phenomenal, and I can’t foresee any slowdown in the near future,” said Denny Edwards, president and CEO of the GRCVB. “Numbers like these only prove that tourism is a huge economic driver in our community.”

The Raleigh area generated more than $219 million in state and local tax revenue last year. Tourism-generated tax receipts are used for education, school construction, water, sewer and other amenities for residents.

Wake County also set a record for average hotel occupancy rate of 67.9 percent—a year-over-year increase of 6.7 percent. Lodging tax collections increased 13 percent from 2013, totaling $20.26 million; prepared food and beverage collections rose 9 percent, amounting to $23 million in 2014.

More than 24,461 jobs are connected to tourism in the Raleigh area, with an estimated at $656 million in income paid to hospitality employees in 2014.

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