Texas is not only home to great music, food, and culture, but it is also one of the biggest tourism generators in the country. The Lone Star State is a big draw whether you are visiting for the first time or are an old time fan of the Texas atmosphere.
Currently the Texas tourism industry is doing very well in terms of revenue and helps to create hundreds of thousands of jobs for in state Texas residents. In addition, the tourism travel industry benefits the firms that help support this industry in both service and retail.
The state's tourism industry has recorded a lot of incoming visitors from both the United States and internationally. Texas had more than 220 million domestic visitors to Texas destinations in 2012. Texas thus had the 3rd largest share of domestic visitation in the U.S. More than 70% of them came for leisure, and 30% were traveling for business.
With over 60 million international tourists visiting the United States per year, the amount of visitors from foreign countries heading to Texas numbered 8.2 million travelers in in 2012. Their direct travel spending reached $ 5.3 billion. Top origin markets included Mexico, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, Australia, Japan and China.
Revenue from tourism makes up 13% of the annual Texas income or GDP, with Texas netting $65 billion from its tourism industry in 2012 in direct travel spending.
Jobs and Taxes
Tourism is big in Texas and it makes up a large part of the state’s revenue. As a result of the amount of visitors Texas gets from around the country and from outside the United States, the local economy is reinforced by this extra money as well as benefiting the local people. Travel and tourism to the Lone Star State directly supported 568,000 jobs in 2012, resulting in an increase of 16,000 jobs. Not only that, tourists who visited Texas helped to generate a whopping $4.4 billion in state and local taxes in the same year.
The travel industry in Texas has been doing better than other states, potentially due to its exotic draws and wide range of both natural and entertaining things to do, such as sampling the spicy and sweet great local cuisine or hitting up a good old fashioned watering hole. Spending on travel in Texas has increased by 3.9% every year since 2009. The volume of travel to Texas destinations has also increased for the past three consecutive years, a positive sign for the state.
Tourism is a leading export-oriented industry. The GDP for the tourism industry in 2012 was $26.8 billion in 2012. Only the oil and gas industries had a higher GDP. Texas has enjoyed its second straight consecutive year of travel growth. From Dallas to Forth Worth, cities are seeing more revenue and their visitor numbers steadily increase. One of the challenges of the industry is keeping that growth steady and continuing to pull in income from international as well as domestic visitors.