TALLAHASSEE, Fla- On Wednesday, VISIT FLORIDA released new figures on the economic impact of visitors to Florida. In 2016, out-of-state visitor spending in Florida reached a record $112 billion, an increase of 2.7 percent over the previous year. Visitors generated $88 billion, or roughly 10 percent, of Florida's total Gross Domestic Product (GDP), up 4.2 percent over 2015, and visitors generated $11.6 billion in state and local taxes, up 3.3 percent.
Governor Scott said, "It is great news that Florida has reached yet another tourism record with a historic $112 billion in visitor spending in 2016. Florida's tourism industry helps support more than 1.4 million jobs across our state and is a major driver in our growing economy. I look forward to working with the Legislature this session to secure $100 million for VISIT FLORIDA so we can continue to market our state as the top tourism destination in the world."
President & CEO Ken Lawson said, "We are continuing to set visitation records in Florida, and new economic indicators show that VISIT FLORIDA's marketing is working. Thanks to the leadership of the Governor and legislature, we're continuing to see increases in not just visitation numbers, but economic indicators as well. Visitor spending, Gross Domestic Product, and state and local revenue are all up thanks to our success marketing the Sunshine State. We hope to continue building on this success by receiving full funding this upcoming year as we work to make Florida the number one global destination."
Lodging represented the largest visitor spending sector at $31.8 billion, an increase of 3.3 percent over 2015. Visitor spending growth in the food & beverage sector accounted for $23 billion, growing 4.2 percent, and visitors spent more than $16 billion in recreational activities, accounting for a 3.6 percent increase.
The study continued to show visitor spending supporting 1.4 million Florida jobs, with an associated income of $53 billion. These jobs represent 17.1 percent of total employment, supporting one out of every six jobs in the state.
To view the full report, produced by Oxford Economics, click HERE.
To view the updated Florida Tourism Infographic, click HERE.