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Indiana’s tourism efforts continue to significantly impact Hoosiers

INDIANAPOLIS (December 30, 2015) – An economic impact report commissioned by Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann and the Indiana Office of Tourism Development (IOTD) details the growth and impact Indiana’s tourism industry achieved in 2014, the most recent year complete data is available. The report confirms the important role the industry plays in Indiana’s economy, with tourism serving as Indiana’s sixth largest industry and supporting nearly 192,000 jobs. Tourism spending contributed $10.7 billion to Indiana businesses, an increase of 3.3% over the previous year, and accounts for over 2.5% of the state’s overall economy. The 3.3% growth in visitor spending is the industry’s largest rate of growth since 2008.

“As a key leader in job creation and workforce development, our tourism industry is a vital contributor to Indiana’s economic health,” said Lt. Governor Ellspermann, who oversees IOTD. “Nearly two years ago, we renewed our efforts to promote Indiana’s tourism assets and Hoosiers continue to see significant return on that investment in dollars contributed to our GDP and jobs created by the industry.”

Key data points from the economic impact study include:

  • Total Indiana tourism spending in 2014 of $10.7 billion (an increase of 3.3% over the previous year).
  • Indiana welcoming over 74 milion total visitors in 2014.
  • In 2014 visitor spending translating to over $8.1 billion in Indiana GDP.
    • Tourism accounts for over 2.5% of Indiana’s total economy.
  • Leisure travelers comprised 85% of total visitors.
  • Direct employment within the Indiana travel, tourism and hospitality industry eclipsing 144,000, making it the sixth-largest industry in the state (excluding government).
    • Tourism supports 192,000 jobs.
  • Indiana tourism generating over $2.25 billion in tax receipts.
  • Tourism paying direct wages of over $5 billion to industry employees.
  • Indiana retaining approximately 76% of each dollar spent by visitors.

“Hoosier Hospitality is world-renowned because of our terrific tourism partners at the county and local levels,” said Mark Newman, IOTD’s executive director. “Their efforts, combined with the state’s new promotional initiatives, are paying big dividends for Indiana. If travelers stopped visiting Indiana destinations, each household would have to pay an additional $500 in state and local taxes to offset the loss of visitor spending.”

Indiana’s tourism industry is essential for promoting a healthy job market. According to the study, one in every 15 Indiana workers owes their job to tourism activity. Tourism was responsible for nearly 10% of net new Indiana jobs in 2014. At 2.6% growth, job creation in the tourism industry outpaced growth in other sectors. It takes only 394 visitors to support one new job in Indiana.

This is the third consecutive year IOTD has engaged in economic impact research with Rockport Analytics, an independent market research and consulting company that specializes in economic impact and feasibility studies for the travel, tourism and hospitality industry. The methodology employed by this study is in accordance with industry best practices and aligns economic impact data at the state and local level with rigorous methodological standards that are recognized as the highest in the industry.

The study used data on Indiana visitor spending derived from multiple sources including Longwoods International, Reach Market Planning and U.S. Office of Travel & Tourism Industries. It was then reconciled with Bureau of Labor Statistics reported employment data, Indiana Department of Revenue reported tax receipts and secondary sources such as Smith Travel Research.

Tourism is defined as an overnight stay or a trip greater than 50 miles each way that is not part of an individual’s normal routine.

This infographic offers some key data points from the economic impact report.


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