Katy Holland, Director of Marketing
Phone: 518-434-1217 x 203
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 12, 2019
Tourists Spent More Than $1 Billion in Albany County Last Year
Albany Experiences Record-High Visitor Spending in 2018
Albany, New York – According to the most recent report released by Governor Cuomo, visitors to Albany County support 15,762 LOCAL JOBS and generate $563 MILLION in labor income annually.
Tourism remains New York State’s 3rd largest private sector industry, supporting close to a million jobs statewide, according to data from the New York State Department of Labor.
In the Capital-Saratoga Region, tourism is a $2.1 BILLION INDUSTRY, up 3.2% from last year. Not surprisingly, Albany County makes up the bulk of that industry with 47% of those sales, or $1 BILLION, with the counties of Saratoga, Rensselaer, Schenectady, Fulton, and Washington splitting the remainder of the visitor spending.
“Albany County remains the main draw for our region’s thriving tourism sector,” says Jill Delaney, President and CEO of Discover Albany. “We are thrilled to see growth in visitation and spending in Albany and in our neighboring counties throughout the region. This kind of growth across the board really inspires Discover Albany to continue to develop promotions and programming that will further build on our collective successes.”
Last year, Discover Albany helped secure many major events and conferences, including the Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses JW Convention, Living Proof and for the first time in Albany the New York State Public High School State Volleyball Championship. These events mean big business for Albany, with attendees spending money at hotels, restaurants, and local businesses and attractions.
According to the report, which reflects 2018 tourism data, visitors spent $229 MILLION on lodging, $235 MILLION on food & beverage, and $34 MILLION on recreation in Albany County. To illustrate the importance of tourism, Discover Albany created an infographic (see attached). Tourism statistics were provided by Tourism Economics, an internationally recognized travel data firm, using the Impact Analysis for Planning (IMPLAN) input-output model for New York State, utilized worldwide by governments, universities, and public and private sector organizations. The model follows the flow of sales through the economy to the generation of GDP, employment, wages and taxes.
Another important impact of tourism? Reduced taxes. Last year, tourism generated $125 MILLION IN STATE AND LOCAL TAXES. In fact, without tourism, Albany County residents would have had to pay an additional $1,000 in taxes last year.
“Discover Albany and our partners across the county help bring tourists and meetings to Albany, and that in turn helps create jobs, offset taxes, and keeps doors open at your favorite local business,” says Delaney. “This report shows just how important tourism is and demonstrates the impact that investing in this sector can have on the local economy.”
ABOUT Discover Albany
The Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Inc. was established in 1976 to promote the civic and commercial progress of the community through increased development of conventions and tourism. Today, the organization is known as Discover Albany. Discover Albany currently represents more than 300 member-businesses and assists each year in hundreds of regional meetings. Discover Albany also operates the Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center, Henry Hudson Planetarium, and the Albany International Airport Information Center. The Albany County Convention and Visitors Bureau Foundation was established in 1993 to provide educational opportunities and work with other organizations to secure grants and funding to advance regional travel and tourism projects. For more information, call 518-434-1217 or 800-258-3582 or visit www.albany.org.