Deal: Georgia tourism growth sets new record

May 5, 2016

Gov. Nathan Deal today announced during National Travel and Tourism Week that the state’s tourism industry generated $58.9 billion in business sales in 2015, according to the U.S. Travel Association and Tourism Economics. This represents a three percent increase over the previous year and a new record for the total economic impact of tourism in Georgia.

“Tourism is one of Georgia’s most robust industries, sustaining an estimated 439,000 jobs across the state,” said Deal. “Each year, the tourism sector remains a major economic driver for the state. However, 2015 is a standout year of record-breaking growth, and reflects all Georgia has to offer. We look forward to setting more records in the years to come.”

The economic growth in business sales includes direct, indirect and induced impact in 2015. According to the U.S. Travel Association and Tourism, Georgia’s total tourism demand is now 29 percent greater than its pre-recession level in 2008. Visitor spending generated $3 billion in state and local tax revenue, a 4.5 percent increase over 2014. As a result of the tourism industry’s tax contribution, each Georgia household receives state and local tax savings of $850.

“It is evident that the tourism industry is one of the state’s leading industries as it spurs economic growth, job creation, local tax savings and provides Georgians with a rich quality of life,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) Commissioner Chris Carr. “Our record-setting numbers show how this dynamic industry contributes to Georgia’s overall business climate and continues to keep Georgia top of mind in the global marketplace.”

“Georgia’s tourism economy continues to expand and much of the credit goes to our talented local tourism organizations and private sector partners, who are creating new and exciting offerings for our visitors to enjoy,” said GDEcD Deputy Commissioner for Tourism Kevin Langston. “The record-breaking impact we exceed each year is a testament to the Georgia Tourism team and our industry partners and their commitment to making Georgia a top tourism destination for visitors from around the world.”

About GDEcD

The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) is the state’s sales and marketing arm, the lead agency for attracting new business investment, encouraging the expansion of existing industry and small businesses, locating new markets for Georgia products, attracting tourists to Georgia, and promoting the state as a destination for arts events and location for film, music and digital entertainment projects, as well as planning and mobilizing state resources for economic development. www.georgia.org