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Arizona Tourism: Who is traveling? What is the financial impact?

Tombstone Chamber Annual Meeting
Monday, August 3 – 6 to 8 p.m.
Tombstone Monument Ranch

Dinner is $15.00 pre-pay with a no host bar
RSVP and pay for dinner by July 27.
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Part 2, Arizona Tourism:  Who is traveling? What is the financial impact?

Last week I started talking about my experience at the Arizona Governors Conference on Tourism.  There were a variety of topics relating to Tourism Industry so in order to share without overwhelming, I have broken down topics and information this is part 2, Arizona Tourism:  Who is traveling? What is the financial impact?

Arizona and the Global State of the Traveler (AOT)

The global leisure travel market is constantly changing. Technology, social media, traveler demographics, safety concerns, gasoline prices, rapid growth in global travel and new product offerings all collide to create a new and ever-shifting travel landscape. Where does Arizona sit in such a landscape? Using data collected in our The State of the American Traveler™ and The State of the International Traveler ™studies, Destination Analysts will share key metrics of Arizona’s position in the global destination market place and delve into the demographic and psychographic profiles of Arizona-oriented travelers. In addition, this session will identify current trends and explore how both domestic and international travelers can be reached and influenced, the media they consume, the types of experiences they seek, the content they most value and more.

Speaker: Erin Francis-Cummings, President and CEO, Destination Analysts

Moderator: Sherry Henry, Director, Arizona Office of Tourism

Below is an excerpt from the 2015 Arizona Travel Impact Report Prepared for the Arizona Office of Tourism by Dean Runyan Associates, pg. 6:

The multibillion dollar travel industry in Arizona is an important part of the state and local economies. The industry is represented primarily by businesses in the leisure and hospitality sector, transportation, and retail. The money that visitors spend on various goods and services while in Arizona produces business receipts at these firms, which in turn generate earnings and employment for Arizona residents. In addition, state and local governments collect taxes that are generated from visitor spending. Most of these taxes are imposed on the sale of goods and services to visitors, thus avoiding a tax burden on local residents. The economic impacts directly generated by visitor spending also contribute to significant secondary impacts. A portion of the business receipts generated by visitor spending is spent by businesses within Arizona for other goods and services (indirect impacts). Visitor generated earnings are also spent by employees for goods and services produced in Arizona (induced impacts).

Summary of Arizona Travel

  • Total direct travel spending in Arizona was $20.9 billion in 2014
    • This represents a 5.4percent increase over the preceding year in current dollars. In real dollars (adjusted for inflation) Arizona travel spending increased by 4.9 percent
    • These spending increases are the strongest since the period immediately preceding the 2008-09 recessions.
  • Lodging sales increased by 9.1 percent in 2014 following a 4.1 percent increase the preceding year
    • The growth in room sales was equally attributable to increased room rates and room demand (STR, Inc.).
  • Visitor air travel on domestic flights to Arizona destinations increased by 3.9 percent in 2014 –also the strongest growth since the years before the recession. Visitor air arrivals to the state were essentially flat from 2010 through 2013.
  • Direct travel
    • Generated employment was 171,500 in 2014
    • This represents an addition of 6,200jobs, an increase of 3.8percent. Jobs were added in all major sectors of the travel industry.
  • The Gross Domestic Product of the travel industry was $8.3 billion in 2014
    • The travel industry and the microelectronics industry have been the top two export-oriented industries in the state in recent years.
    • The re-spending of travel-related revenues by businesses and employees creates secondary impacts. In 2014, the secondary impacts were 147,000 jobs with $6.2 billion in earnings.

Arizona Visitor Profile
40.7 Million Overnight Visitors

Domestic Traveler: 35 million overnight visitors, of which, 25.1 million are non-resident visitors.

  • The average non-resident visitor stays 4.3 nights
  • The average non-resident visitor party size is 2.9 persons
  • The average non-resident visitor spends $767 per party/trip*

Top Domestic Origins

California 7.7 million, Illinois 1.6 million, Texas 1.6 million,  New York 1.5 million, Colorado 1.2 million

International Traveler:  5.7 Million overnight visitors, of which, 952,313 travel from overseas

  • The average overseas visitor stays 6.3 nights
  • The average overseas visitor party size is 3.6 persons
  • The average overseas visitor spends $4,228 per party/trip*

Top International Origins

Mexico 3.8 million, Canada 896,467, Germany 127,705, United Kingdom 116,542
France 113,385

Tying the Data Back to Tombstone

Tombstone Visitor Profile

Website and Facebook visits/reach

As you will see that Tombstone’s Website and Facebook traffic parallels that of the Arizona Office Of Tourism.  What does this mean?   That Tombstone isn’t a total anomaly, that Tombstone falls into the trends and changes that tourism industry is experiencing. 

Facebook Page Top Domestic Origins
California, Texas, Colorado, Nevada, Alabama, Kentucky, Georgia, New York, Michigan

Facebook Page Top International Origins
United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Mexico, France, Brazil, Australia

Chamber Website Domestic Origins
California, Texas, Colorado, Illinois, New York, Florida, Maryland

Chamber Website Top International Origins
United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Brazil


Tombstone Privilege Tax Collections







































































As you can see, over-all the Retail and Restaurant/Bar taxes collected were up during the first quarter of these comparison years, except Jan 2014-15.  There is quite a difference in the numbers, it doesn’t seem like a average increase; I will look into the anomaly for a future post.

Also apparent is the fact that accommodation tax collected in January went up but dropped in February and March. That could mean fewer overnight visitors or overnight visitors are staying fewer days.

Source: The State of Arizona Department of Revenue, Ecoometrics Section and Cochise College Center for Economic Research. Discrepancies due to rounding


Welcome to New and Returning Chamber Members

Tombstone RV Park & Campground

Sacred Heart Church

Down by the River B & B

Wyatt’s Hotel, Coffee House and Saloon Theatre

Tombstone Repertory Co

Doc Holliday’s Saloon

Katie’s Cozy Cabins

Monument Ranch

Tombstone Training

T Miller’s Mercantile

Big Nose Kate’s Saloon

O.K. Corral

Lions Club

Thank you!!!