Gov. Pat McCrory announced on Monday that North Carolina tourism generated record visitor spending in 2015 with a total of $21.9 billion, a 2.7 percent increase compared to 2014, which outpaced the national average for growth last year of only 2.1 percent. Additionally, tourism industry-supported employment topped 211,000 jobs to set another record for the state.
“Nearly 50 million people from across the United States visited North Carolina destinations last year,” Governor McCrory said. “The money they spend supports 211,400 jobs and more than 45,000 businesses.”
Gov. McCrory, who proclaimed May 1-7 Travel & Tourism Week in North Carolina, applauded the growth in direct tourism employment, which was up 3.2 percent compared to 2014. Payroll income grew even more, increasing 6.5 percent to top $5 billion for the first time.
The figures are from research conducted by the U.S. Travel Association on behalf of Visit North Carolina. Other findings from the study showed state tax receipts as a result of visitor spending rose 6.1 percent to more than $1.1 billion. Visitors spent nearly $60 million per day in North Carolina last year and contributed about $4.9 million per day in state and local tax revenues as a result of that spending. An overview of the research findings can be found online here.