Visit North Carolina has announced results from the latest annual tourism spending impact study, the “Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties 2021.” According to the study, the rebound from the negative economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the hospitality and tourism industry in 2020 is evident, as visitor spending in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County generated $831 million in 2021, an increase of 58 percent from 2020.
The study also reports visitor expenditures in Forsyth County generated $64 million in local and state tax revenues in 2021 compared to $42 million from 2020.
After visitor spending hit a record high in 2019 of $1 billion, spending was drastically cut by almost half the following year due to the pandemic.
“Experiencing this strong rebound in a two-year period is encouraging,” Richard Geiger, president of Visit Winston-Salem. “These state spending findings echo the steady increases we’ve tracked in our monthly hotel occupancy reports and indicates a positive economic outlook for Winston-Salem. We are encouraged by this positive news which reaffirms our hospitality industry is a strong economic partner for Winston-Salem,” said Geiger.
The data comes from an annual study commissioned by Visit North Carolina, a unit of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina.