Record Statewide Tourism Levels For 2013 Announced By Christie Administration

Dated: 04/01/2014

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Tourism revenue reached a record last summer statewide, despite the effects of a superstorm. The industry generated $40.4 billion in 2013, announced Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno at the New Jersey Governor’s Conference on Tourism March 19-20 in Atlantic City. What they’re counting in that figure is “visitor spending, capital investment and general government support of tourism,” according to the N.J. Division of Travel and Tourism. Business travel does count as tourism, Industry spokesmen remarked. The total reflects a 1.3 percent increase over 2012, although that may sound strange to some local business owners and real estate agents who have said that their revenue was down by as much as 30 percent. A late start to the summer figured into some of those complaints. However, according to the numbers, visitation as a statewide total rose to 87.2 million in 2013, a 5.9 percent increase compared to 2012.

Meanwhile, a separate study by Stockton’s Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism said that of shore tourists who live in New Jersey, 18.4 percent went to Atlantic County last year, 15 percent visited Cape May County, 12.4 percent chose Ocean County, and 6.5 percent went to Monmouth County’s shoreline. The numbers released by the state were met with approval. “Today’s numbers reaffirm the incredible resilience shown by New Jersey’s tourism industry and the commitment of our visitors, who continue to demonstrate their support by vacationing at our great tourist destinations after Sandy,” said Guadagno. “The performance of our tourism industry is integral to the overall health of our state’s economy. To achieve this record progress is so encouraging for the future, as New Jersey is well-positioned to build on this success entering the important spring and summer months.”
The Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce was represented at the conference by Lori Pepenella, destination marketing and communications director. “When the stats were released at the N.J. Tourism Conference last week, we were all very positive. Last year had its challenges, but solid and consistent messaging, new offerings and partnerships with DMOs (Destination Marketing Organizations) across the state helped introduce us to new visitors while keeping connected with long-time vacationers,” Pepenella said. “We are an important part of the New Jersey tourism experience and our region has a lot to be proud of.”
New Jersey’s travel and tourism industry directly supports 320,238 jobs, a slight increase over 2012 (.5 percent), according to the Economic Impact of Tourism Report released March 20 by the Department of State. Tourism employment has grown for three consecutive years. “The impact that visitor spending has on creating jobs and essential tax revenue for so many communities statewide cannot be overstated,” added the lieutenant governor. “We look forward to further assisting more tourism-related businesses grow, and in doing so continue to promote the diversity of venues and destinations available to all visitors.”
Other highlights of the annual tourism report include: Tourism generated $35.9 billion of state GDP in 2013, or 7 percent of the entire state economy. Were tourism in New Jersey a company, its sales would rank No. 70 on the Fortune 500 list – bigger than Sears, DuPont and Hess. The 320,238 jobs directly supported by tourism spending is larger than the private employment in all but four counties in New Jersey. Including both direct and indirect impacts, tourism in New Jersey generated $4.6 billion in state and local taxes and $5.2 billion in federal taxes last year. The $4.6 billion tourism generated in state and local taxes is equal to putting $55,750 on every single seat in MetLife Stadium, and represents more than $35 million per mile of coastline in New Jersey.
The slogan for this summer’s tourism campaign in the state is “Going Strong.” The state launched the campaign earlier this month. The key is building on last year’s success, planners said. “A joint effort by the Division of Travel and Tourism and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, the campaign will focus on the diversity of the state’s tourism appeal to visitors of all ages and interests,” said a press release from the division. “This includes, but is not limited to, New Jersey’s wealth of historical and cultural assets, its legendary shore destinations, and its collection of world-class entertainment venues.” To learn how the state is promoting itself as a destination, see the website at —M.S.
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Kim Pileggi

Greetings from Long Beach Island! I am a full time real estate agent specializing in LBI sales and summer rentals, servicing all of LBI and the surrounding mainland communities. I have earned several ....

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