Jacksonville Tourism Numbers Set Records in 2022

By Benjamin Cox on September 8, 2023 at 9:45am

Jacksonville’s 2022 tourism numbers are in – and they are at a new record.

Jacksonville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Brittany Henry says the area is experiencing a historic peak in the local tourism economy: “We have it a historic peak in visitor expenditures in the Jacksonville area, and I think that is worth celebrating. I think letting everyone in our community know what we are doing is really important because everybody helps contribute to those numbers. That’s what is very exciting about these. We support 430 jobs in the Jacksonville area, but travel expenditures topped $77 million in the Jacksonville area in 2022. That was a 13.7% increase from last year’s numbers. That even beat our post and pre-pandemic numbers. Wonderful numbers that we’ve got here. For local tax revenue, I think that’s what most want to see, [tourism] generated $2.2 million on a local tax level for our community, which was also a 15.7% increase. Again, we topped those numbers pre-pandemic travel numbers. I’m really excited about this.”

Tourism numbers are always approximately a year behind, Henry explained. 2023’s numbers will be released next year at the same time.

The numbers are provided by global tourism research firm Tourism Economics, which measures the number of visitors as well as their impact on the state’s economy. Last month, Governor J.B. Pritzker announced the state had reached its highest-ever level of hotel revenue – surpassing records set prior to the pandemic in 2019. The state welcomed 111 million visitors last year resulting in $44 billion in spending.

A further breakdown on the Jacksonville area’s tourism numbers and tourism to the area overall will be heard on an upcoming episode of AM1180’s “What’s on Your Mind.”