York County ranks in top 10 in visitor spending in PA
Visitors spent more than $973 million in 2016, marking the seventh straight year of growth
York, PA – Visitor spending in York County surged to a high of $973.6 million in 2016, placing the Factory Tour Capital of the World® in the top 10 of all Pennsylvania counties, according to new figures released by the state tourism office last week.
Traveler spending increased by nearly $30 million from 2015 to 2016, marking the seventh straight year that York County’s tourism industry has enjoyed growth, according to data from the Tourism Economics report. Since 2006, visitor spending has grown by more than 31 percent in York County.
“The new data confirms what we already knew: Tourism is an important economic driver for hotels, restaurants and small businesses all across York County,” said Anne Druck, President of the York County Convention & Visitors Bureau. “When visitors come to York for factory tours, sporting events or to enjoy a day in the vineyard, they spend money that is reinvested into our community. Whether it’s a restaurant adding more staff for a busy weekend or a municipality using tax revenue to maintain streets, parks and vital services, the impact of tourism can be seen all around us.”
York County is part of the Dutch Country Roads Region, Pennsylvania’s No. 2 tourist region. Visitors spent a record-high $8.4 billion in the region in 2016, increasing 2.4 percent from 2015. The region trails only Philadelphia and its Countryside. Of the nine counties comprising the Dutch Country Roads Region, York County ranked third in visitor spending, behind just Dauphin and Lancaster counties.
Out of six travel categories examined by Tourism Economics, York County visitors spent the most on transportation at $288.6 million. Food and beverages followed at $226.9 million. Retail spending registered at $174.1 million, recreation at $171.6 million and lodging at $112.3 million. Across the board, the spending in all these categories increased from 2015.
“In fact, when considering traveler activity combined with government spending and capital investment in support of tourism, York County’s total travel demand reached $1,020 million in 2016,” said Mark Sindicich, owner of Victor’s Italian Restaurant in York and the current YCCVB Board Chair.
“Our continued growth is a testament to a strong network of attractions, the support of our local elected officials and a dedicated staff at the York County CVB. None of this would be possible without all our stakeholders working together to build a place that people want to visit again and again.”
The increase in York County’s visitor spending may be attributed to several new events held in 2016, including:
- Tyrant Duals• Irish Rumble
- Middle Atlantic Junior Olympic Swimming
- Keystone Region Volleyball Association Girl’s 12U-17U
- PA Bar Exam• Tim Weaver International (Gymnastics)
Many of these events are brought in by the York County Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Sport York business-to-business brand, which brings thousands of athletes and their families to town, boosting the local economy. Also held in 2016 were the York County Convention & Visitor’s Bureau’s signature events:
- Mason-Dixon Wine Trail’s Tour de Tanks
- Made in America Tours Event
- Mason-Dixon Wine Trail’s Wine Just Off the Vine
The York County Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Mission is to maximize tourism expenditures and their economic impact in York County, PA, through comprehensive tourism sales and marketing programs. The York County CVB’s Vision is for a York County where tourism is recognized for the value of its economic impact and its role in raising the profile of York County as a sought-after destination. For more information on the York County Convention & Visitors Bureau, call 1-888-858-9675 or visit www.yorkpa.org.
Source: York County Convention & Visitors Bureau press release