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$38 billion

March 16, 2012

After a 7.1 percent rise in spending, tourism dollars in the Garden State totaled $38 billion last year, nearly matching 2007’s record all-time high, according to a report released by Tourism Economics, a consulting company headquartered in Philadelphia.

Those 2011 dollars translated into $4.4 billion in state and local taxes, as well as $4.8 billion in federal taxes. Tourism spending directly supports 312,000 jobs in New Jersey, or 9.8 percent of employment when considering indirect impact. Tourism Economics says that without New Jersey’s tourism industry, each New Jersey household would have to pay an additional $1,380 to maintain state government revenues.

An overwhelming majority (91.3 percent) of visitors to New Jersey were from the U.S., with about 64 percent of all tourism revenue from out of state. About 8.7 percent of visitors were international. What’s more, most visitors stayed overnight (91.7 percent) and were here for leisure (84 percent vs. 16 percent for business). Lodging accounted for the biggest segment of the tourism revenue pie, with the average cost-per-bed per-night being $106. Lodging was followed by food, shopping, transportation, and recreation, in that order.

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