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Louisiana Tourism Spending and Forecasting Numbers Released -- 12/03/2008
Office of Lieutenant Governor
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 3, 2008
Louisiana Tourism Spending and Forecasting Numbers Released
Research showcases statewide success
BATON ROUGE - Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu unveiled two new research reports that showcase the continued recovery of the tourism industry throughout the state of Louisiana. Both reports illustrate increased visitation and potential visitor's intent to visit Louisiana.
The number of visitors statewide is expected to recover by 2010, with 24.3 million people expected to visit the state that year, according to a recent survey conducted by the University of New Orleans Hospitality Research Center. Projections for 2008 show that Louisiana is expected to host 22.8 million visitors this year
"The continued recovery of the tourism industry is important to the overall cultural and financial health of our state," said Lt. Governor Landrieu. "This research demonstrates our success on behalf of the Louisiana tourism industry. We should all be aware, however, that we may see a slowdown in the rate of our growth. The current global economic climate will affect the way many of our potential visitors choose to spend their money."
The "Louisiana Tourism TSA and Forecast: 2008-2012" report also showcased that travel expenditures are projected to recover by the end of 2008 with spending forecasted to reach $9.3 billion. The benchmark year was 2004, when visitor spending was at its highest ($10 billion).
Additional highlights from the report show:
Since shortly after the 2005 hurricanes, the state of Louisiana has also conducted a tracking study among potential visitors. The chief purpose of the research was to gauge perceptions of Louisiana as a leisure travel destination.
- Travel and Tourism industry directly employed 7.7% of Louisiana workforce in 2007. This is a marked improvement from 2006 when the Travel and Tourism industry directly employed 6% of the sates workforce. This represents over 143,000 Louisiana residents who were directly employed in the Travel and Tourism industry.
- $5.6 billion of 2007 Louisiana production was directly attributed to expenditures in travel and tourism. This is a $2 billion increase from 2006, when $3.9 billion of Louisiana production was directly attributed to expenditures in the travel and tourism industry.
- Visitors spending accounted for $782 million of Louisiana revenues, or 8.7% of that 2007 budget category. In comparison, in 2006 visitor spending accounted for $702 million of Louisiana revenues or 8% of that budget category.
Research conducted in July 2008 by independent research firm MDRG shows that most negative perceptions associated with the 2005 hurricanes are gone. Potential visitors believe that Louisiana has accommodations and attractions for them to enjoy when visiting the state.
"We learned from our research that potential visitors to Louisiana wanted more information about what there was to see and do in the state. They especially wanted to know what Louisiana locals do for fun," added Landrieu. "We took that research to heart and developed the "My Louisiana" campaign, with Louisiana insiders sharing with visitors everything they love about our state."
Other highlights from the survey include:
For more information on the Louisiana tourism industry, please visit www.LouisianaTravel.com.
- Consumers in key target markets (Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Memphis, Mobile-Pensacola, Jackson and Birmingham) continue to express interest in visiting Louisiana.
- Louisiana receives high scores on the leisure travel attributes: restaurants that offer superb, local cuisine; a variety of historical and cultural attractions; and providing unique experiences that cannot be had elsewhere.
- Almost 7 out of 10 respondents in key markets are aware of Louisiana's advertising efforts and those who are aware are more likely to say they would visit and have better impressions on key tourism attributes.
- Recent visitors express a higher level of interest in visiting than those who have never visited or visited years ago, suggesting that the experience delivered on their expectations.