Wisconsin’s Tourism Economic Impact

MADISON, Wis. Tourism is an integral part of the Wisconsin economy. It generates millions in tax receipts, and its broad range of employment creation provides jobs that support the state’s economic health. Wisconsin Economic Impact Research Tourism reached $21.6 billion in 2018.

In reviewing this recent Statewide report, Governor Evers said, “Wisconsin’s tourism industry plays a critically important role in our state’s economy,” said Governor Evers. “Investing in tourism means investing in Wisconsin. When we invest in protecting our state’s natural resources and promoting our state’s attractions and events, we ensure that economic development is a 72-county strategy in Wisconsin.”

The tourism industry continues to show stable growth according to the latest economic impact figures. Last year, tourism supported over 199,000 jobs. Trips in Wisconsin topped 112 million in 2018, and visitors generated $1.6 billion in state and local revenue and $1.2 billion in federal taxes, saving Wisconsin taxpayers $680 per household.

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Family Enjoying The Hurricane inside Wilderness Waterpark

“Tourism in Wisconsin continues to see steady economic growth thanks to all of the individuals who work hard to advance the industry,” notes Tourism Secretary-designee Meaney.

“We also see tremendous growth opportunities that will help us tell the story of Wisconsin and attract new travelers to explore some of our most unique offerings.”

The exterior of Lambeau Field with Flowers

motivator for visitors to Wisconsin. Out of five categories, traveler spending on recreation experienced the fastest growth at 8% in 2018, followed by transportation at 6.5% and retail at 4.9%. Last year, tourism achieved a Return on Investment of 7 to 1: $7 in tax revenue per $1 in promotional spend.

During the recent National Travel & Tourism Week in May, celebrations included the annual salute to travel in America. Communities nationwide united around a common theme to showcase travel’s contributions to the economy and American jobs.

Big Bay State Park, family on the boardwalk

The mission of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism is to market the state as the Midwest’s premier travel destination for fun. For more information, visit www.TravelWisconsin.com.

Wisconsin Tourism Industry

Contact Information
201 W. Washington Ave.
P.O. Box 8690
Madison, WI 53708-8690

Wisconsin Department of Tourism