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Tourism growth in Omaha for 9th year in a row

Posted: 1:05 PM, Oct 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-10-22 14:05:08-04
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OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Tourism continues to trend up in Omaha according to study results released by the Omaha Convention & Visitors Bureau, aka Visit Omaha. With that comes lower taxes and a big impact on the local economy they say.

By the numbers according to the report:

  • 13.1 million visitors in 2018, a 6% increase over 2016
  • $1.3 billion spent while in Omaha, a 6.5% increase over 2016
  • The money visitors spend in our city supports 6% of all jobs in Omaha
  • 17,860 Omaha jobs, one in every 17, are linked to tourism.
  • Half of every visitor dollar spent in Omaha is spent eating, drinking and shopping
  • The largest growth came in the amount of money visitors are spending on recreation, such as going to the zoo, museums, concerts, performances and sporting events
  • Recreational spending surpassed $200 million in 2018, increasing $14 million since 2016
  • Last year, out-of-town visitors paid $164 million in state and local taxes
  • Each Douglas County household saves $750 a year in taxes because of visitor spending

“Visitor spending increased $80 million in two years,” said Keith Backsen, executive director for Visit Omaha, the city’s official tourism authority. “That money is being spent at our local hotels, restaurants, retail shops, and attractions, which in turn creates jobs for our family, friends and neighbors.”

The report was conducted by Tourism Economics.