West Coast Best Coast: New Study Shows Tourism Returning to California

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Few industries suffered during the pandemic quite like tourism as operations ground to a halt and travelers remained wary of planes even when restrictions were lifted. But new data suggests that the allure of the Golden State hasn’t worn off quite yet. A new report from Visit California  found that travel spending has returned to 93% of its pre-pandemic levels, with employment at 94% of 2019 levels. In fact, economists project that California tourism spending in 2023 will surpass 2019’s record-breaking $144.9 billion, a major sign of the industry’s health. Travel and tourism are major contributors to the Bay Area tax base, particularly in destinations like San Francisco. In 2022, travel generated $11.9 billion in state and local tax revenue, 97% of pre-pandemic levels. State and local leaders must continue to make California an appealing destination for tourists, including by investing in safety and cleanliness in our urban areas and by protecting our abundant natural beauty. Our state’s amenities can’t be beaten. It’s no wonder the rest of the world is ‘California dreaming.’

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