Why Tourism Matters
- Total direct travel spending in California has increased again in 2014, projected at $117 billion, a 3.4% increase from 2013 spending.
- Travel spending in California directly supported 1,013,000 jobs, with earnings of $38 billion.
- Travel spending in 2014 generated $4.3 billion in local taxes and $5.2 billion in state taxes.
- Travel spending generated the greatest number of jobs in accommodation and food services(523,000 jobs) and arts, entertainment and recreation (221,000 jobs).
- 15.6 million International visitors traveled to California in 2013. 6.6 million were from overseas,7.4 million from Mexico, and 1.5 million from Canada.
- California’s top overseas visitor markets in 2013 were: U.K. (652,000), Japan (536,000), Australia(553,000), China (819,000), Germany (421,000), S Korea (389,000) and India (240,000).
Travel and tourism serves as a catalyst for improving the well-being of all Californians by bringing great value to the economy and enhancing the state’s image.
- The $12.5 billion in state, local, and federal tax revenues generated by direct travel spending in California in 2013 saved each household in the state over $900 in taxes.
- Travel and tourism helps stimulate investment in new enterprises that benefit all parts of the state with new jobs and tax revenues for local services.
- A large cross-section of industry sectors throughout the state benefit from travel and tourism,including accommodations, transportation, attractions, restaurants, retail and many others.
- The industry helps to reduce unemployment levels around the state, since tourism unemployment is lower than other industries.
- Tourism is resilient, weathering down economies better than most industries. This helps ensure a steady, reliable, much-needed tax revenue stream at both local and state levels.
Travel and tourism creates jobs across a broad spectrum of skill sets, education levels and wages.
- A stable economy needs a balanced and layered work force that provides a range of employment opportunities.
- Steady tourism-related job growth drives down California’s unemployment rate.
- Travel and tourism provides more jobs than agriculture, transportation, information, or educational services.
- Tourism needs people – not machines or technology – to thrive. That means tourism jobs cannot be outsourced to other states or countries.
- Tourism employs more people than any other California export industry.
- Tourism is the top employer in two of California’s eight rural regions – Deserts and High Sierra –and ranks among the top four such employers in six of the eight regions.
- Visitor revenues support local economies and make it possible to preserve remote natural icons,cultural resources, and historical landmarks and districts.