sunset over the mountains on a clear day in jackson county

2017 Visitor Spending figures announced for Jackson County

County Spending by Domestic Visitors Increases by 3.85 Percent to $195.44 Million

JACKSON COUNTY, N.C. (August 23, 2018) — Visit North Carolina announced today that domestic visitors to and within Jackson County spent $195.44 million in 2017, an increase of 3.85 percent from 2016.

“The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority and its partners are thrilled with the significant increases we saw across the board in Visit North Carolina’s 2017 tourism impact numbers,” said Nick Breedlove, Executive Director of the Jackson County TDA. “To increase visitor spending $20 million – from $175 million in 2015 to $195 million – in just two years is something that we’re extremely pleased with. This noteworthy growth reflects the hard work and dedication of our wonderful accommodations, restaurants, visitor centers, local shops and artists, and outdoor attractions. The great experience people have is also due in large part to the gracious hospitality of everyone who works at these establishments. At the end of the day what this increase translates to is sustaining existing jobs, putting people to work, and supporting small, local businesses,” Breedlove said.

Tourism impact highlights for 2017:

  • The travel and tourism industry directly employees more than 1,850 in Jackson County.
  • Total payroll generated by the tourism industry in Jackson County was $48.52 million.
  • State tax revenue generated in Jackson County totaled $10.86 million through state sales and excise taxes, and taxes on personal and corporate income. About $9.08 million in local taxes were generated from sales and property tax revenue from travel-generated and travel-supported businesses.

Gov. Roy Cooper announced in May that visitors to North Carolina set a record for spending in 2017. The $23.99 billion in total spending represented an increase of 4.2 percent from 2016.

These statistics are from the “Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties 2017,” which can be accessed at The study was prepared for Visit North Carolina by the U.S. Travel Association.

“All eight economic development regions of the state had spending growth of 3 percent or more, and 90 percent of the state’s counties saw direct tourism employment growth from 2016 to 2017,” said Wit Tuttell, executive director of Visit North Carolina. “Tourism continues to be major driver of economic development across North Carolina, which is the sixth most-visited state in the country.”

Statewide highlights include:

  • State tax receipts as a result of visitor spending rose 3.4 percent to more than $1.2 billion in 2017.
  • Visitors spend more than $65 million per day in North Carolina. That spending adds $5.38 million per day to state and local tax revenues (about $3.36 million in state taxes and $2.02 million in local taxes).
  • The travel and tourism industry directly employees more than 225,000 North Carolinians.
  • Each North Carolina household saves on average $515 in state and local taxes as a direct result of visitor spending in the state.

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