ARIZONA NEWS

More than 44 million tourists spent $7.8 billion in Phoenix last year

Jun 22, 2018, 2:42 PM | Updated: 3:46 pm

(Courtesy Photo/Visit Phoenix)...

(Courtesy Photo/Visit Phoenix)

(Courtesy Photo/Visit Phoenix)

PHOENIX — The latest numbers show tourists still are major contributors to Phoenix’s economy.

VisitPhoenix.com released its 2017 tourism numbers Thursday. The report showed 44 million visitors came to Phoenix last year.

“The total direct spending from that 44 million visitors is nearly $7.8 billion,” Visit Phoenix’s Eric Kerr said.

Most of that money, he said, was spent on lodging, restaurants, recreation and retail.

The majority of the visitors were from other parts of the U.S. International tourism has stagnated since 2015. However, overall, Phoenix is doing well in the tourism market.

Adam Sacks, president of Tourism Economics, which did the study, said visitor spending supported 128,000 jobs in Phoenix and affected $4.4 billion in personal income.

“These impacts have surged over the past five years with visitor spending expanding 29 percent since 2012,” Sacks said.

The top five states for travelers to Phoenix were California, Colorado, Illinois, Texas and Arizona.

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More than 44 million tourists spent $7.8 billion in Phoenix last year