OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Every year, people traverse Nebraska, looking for new sights and experiences that the Cornhusker state has to offer. This year, according to a release from the Nebraska Tourism Commission, a record number of people did just that.
The commission said, “A record-breaking number of people made it to all 70 stops in the 2021 Nebraska Passport program. This year, the program had 1,314 Passport Champions, versus 1,188 in 2020. The Passport inspires Nebraskans and tourists to travel throughout the state collecting stamps to earn prizes, while also supporting Nebraska’s tourism destinations and small businesses. The program took place from May 1, 2021 to September 30, 2021.”
“It’s exciting to have another record-breaking number of Passport Champions this year,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism Commission executive director. “The Passport continues to be successful at encouraging Nebraskans to move throughout the state, spreading their tourism dollars and giving those from out-of-state ideas on where to travel.”
Some statistics from this years program:
- From submitted Passports, 195,441 stamps were collected.
- The average number of stamps submitted per participant was 31.
- Participants included residents from 399 Nebraska communities and 37 states.
- Passport participants ranged in age from 5 months to 93-years-old.
- Participants submitted over 850 stories of their travels on Nebraskapassport.com
For people who completed all 70 stops in 2021, prizes included monthly boxes from Omaha Steaks, a combo meal a week from Runza, three two-night stays at some Nebraska Game and Parks properties and more.
According to a study done in 2019, the program generated $23.7 million in travel spending in Nebraska and $1.9 million in state and local taxes. For every dollar invested by Nebraska Tourism Commission, $150 was generated by traveler spending and $12.30 was collected in taxes.
Next year, there could be even more stops as the Nebraska Tourism Commission is taking currently taking applications for its 2022 program. For more information, visit the Nebraska Passport website. According to the site, “There is no fee to apply for, or participate in, the Nebraska Passport Program.”