November 27, 2009

North Dakota outpaces nation’s core tourism growth

North Dakota outpaces nation’s core tourism growth
Recently released studies show North Dakota outpacing the nation in tourism growth. The studies include research by IHS Global Insight, Longwoods International, Statistics Canada, the U.S. Travel Association, and North Dakota State University.
The IHS Global Insight study, commissioned by North Dakota Tourism, indicates North Dakota’s core tourism grew by 10.7 percent from calendar year 2006 to calendar year 2008, compared to national growth of 8.1 percent during the same timeframe. Core tourism includes the primary industries of accommodations, entertainment, retail, dining and transportation.
Other highlights from the Global Insight study include:
• Approximately $760 million in wages and salaries were generated by travel and tourism in 2008.
• 31,208 jobs were created by travel and tourism economic activity, accounting for 8.5 percent of total employment in the state.
• 67 percent of travelers are non-residents.
The IHS Global Insight study is the most recent of several studies North Dakota utilizes that shows North Dakota Tourism is on the right track, according to Shane Goettle, commissioner of the North Dakota Department of Commerce. “The Tourism Division routinely conducts research to determine the effectiveness of our marketing strategies,” said Goettle. “These studies consistently show North Dakota’s tourism industry is growing. Our research-driven strategy is the core of our success.”
Due to the diversity of the industry, it is important to use several methods to measure and cross check the impact of tourism.
Canadian travel increases

Additionally, a report from Statistics Canada, summarized for North Dakota by Longwoods International, demonstrates the impact Canadian visitors have on North Dakota. Statistics Canada shows Canadian travel to North Dakota was up 32.1 percent, yielding 1.5 million trips for the timeframe of 2006 to 2008, within the same period Canadian expenditures grew 86 percent, totaling $273 million in 2008.
• Another indicator of Canadian travel to North Dakota is border crossing numbers. From 2006 to 2008, crossings increased 16 percent.

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