Ohio’s Tourism Economy and Lake Erie
By: Tammy Brown, Ohio’s Office of Tourism
Visitors to Ohio’s Lake Erie Region generated business sales of $11.5 billion in 2011, up from $10.1 billion in 2009. Area tourism also sustained 117,513 full-time equivalent jobs, 9.8 percent of salaried employment in the region. That’s an increase from 114,703 in 2009. Tourism further benefited the Lake Erie Region by generating a total of $784 million in taxes — $456 million in state and $328 million in local taxes. This represents a slight increase from 2009 when the industry generated $757 million in state and local taxes.
Ohio’s tourism economy grew 6.5 percent in 2011 and generated $40 billion in total sales, up from $38 billion in 2010, according to research conducted on behalf of the Ohio Office of Tourism. Tourism last year generated $2.7 billion in taxes for Ohio – $1.6 billion in state taxes and $1.1 billion in local taxes. This growth in sales helped increase tourism employment to 443,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs with an associated income of $10.6 billion, an increase of 4,000 jobs over 2010. About 1 in every 11.5 jobs or 8.7 percent of Ohio’s jobs in 2011 were sustained by Ohio’s tourism industry. Tourism is a resilient industry with the ability to quickly add new jobs to meet increased demand, which has put it at the forefront of economic recovery.
Total visitation to and within Ohio grew to more than 180 million visits in 2011, up from an estimated 179 million visits in 2010. More than 36 million visitors who traveled to Ohio in 2011 stayed overnight, an increase of 5 percent from 2010.
“This is a good indicator that Ohio tourism has returned to pre-recession levels and represents very good news for our industry since Ohio’s average overnight visitor outspends day travelers by three to one,” said Assistant Tourism Director Pat Barker.