LINCOLN, Neb. (April 27, 2016) The 33rd annual National Travel and Tourism Week will take place next week, May 1-7. This yearly celebration unites communities each year to celebrate what travel means to American jobs, economic growth and personal well-being.
“Just look at the numbers. Travel supports one in nine American jobs, including over 46,000 jobs right here in Nebraska,” said Kathy McKillip, Nebraska Tourism Commission executive director. “Next week, we are celebrating what travel means to our community, and we call on everyone—from elected officials to local residents—to join us in saluting this important industry.”
Tourism is Nebraska’s third largest industry and in recent years nationwide awareness about Nebraska’s main attractions and hidden gems have helped better promote the state as a destination. Increased lodging tax collections point to visitors spending more time in Nebraska. For the year 2015, lodging tax collections totaled $5,244,601.02, the highest total ever collected and a 7.1 percent increase over 2014. VisitNebraska.com has also seen a large spike in activity, with the most recent numbers for the website showing page views up almost 20 percent from last year.
In addition to its benefits for the local economy, travel can also have a positive effect on personal well-being for residents and visitors of Nebraska. According to the U.S. Travel Association, numerous research studies have confirmed the positive health effects of travel and time off, from reducing the risk of heart disease to decreasing depression. Using time off to travel with families is good for everyone, especially children—kids who travel with their families are more likely to attend college and earn more as adults.
“Think of it this way: if travel were able to run for president in 2016, it’d be the perfect candidate,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, the umbrella organization representing the U.S. travel industry. “It’s a job creator, educator, and it’s pro-family and pro-health. This National Travel and Tourism Week, we’re saluting how our dynamic industry contributes to America and continues to do wonders for our business and personal lives.”
Share your experiences on social media this National Travel and Tourism Week by using #nttw16, #visitnebraska and #nebraskanice. Safe Travels!
For details about special Travel & Tourism Week events going on in your area, contact your local tourism office.