2005-05-20 / News

Travel Gains Anticipated in Tourism Industry

Gains are forecast in travel this year by Michigan’s tourism industry, mimicking national expectations. According to Travel Michigan research, the travel and tourism outlook for the new year is positive, with 58 percent of businesses surveyed anticipating increases in business generated from tourism.

An increase of seven percent is predicted for travel in the United States overall, reported Travel Industry of America, led by a noticeable increase in business travel, which forecasters expect to climb 3.6 percent over 2004 levels. Leisure travel is expected to grow by 2 percent nationwide.

In the Travel Michigan survey, data was gathered from Michigan tourism businesses and potential Michigan travelers. After experiencing a decline in 2004, more than half of businesses surveyed predicted an increase for this year. Potential travelers to Michigan reported they expected to spend 7.3 nights in paid accommodations, up from 6.1 nights in 2004.

Use of the Travel Michigan Web site increased 25 percent in 2004, compared to 2003, with more than five million people turning to michigan.org for travel information last year, the agency reported.

The tourism industry contributes $16 billion to Michigan’s economy, accounting for 182,000 jobs and generating $853 million in state tax revenues. Tourism is the second largest industry in the state, behind the automotive industry.

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