Arizona tourism needs to reboot marketing campaign, economist says

May 5, 2021, 7:39 AM | Updated: 9:24 am
(AP Photo/John Locher)...
(AP Photo/John Locher)
(AP Photo/John Locher)

PHOENIX – A Phoenix-area economist said as the COVID-19 pandemic subsides and travel resumes, Arizona needs to step up its game to attract tourists other states are pursuing.

“There’s a lot of pent-up demand for travel,” economist Jim Rounds told KTAR News 92.3 FM. “You’re seeing this in terms of bookings for Airbnb, time shares, hotels. We’re seeing an uptick but if we don’t advertise for tourism we’re going to lose some of that … to other states.”

Before the coronavirus hit last year, Arizona’s tourism industry was around a $25 billion per year piece of the state’s economic engine.

As vaccination numbers increase across the country, other states are ramping up tourism spending and Arizona needs to follow suit to bring tens of millions of dollars into the state, Rounds said.

Arizona could recover most of the lost jobs by the end of the year with the exception of tourism, which could take another year.

Overall, Rounds said, the state has recovered about 68% of the 320,000 jobs lost during the pandemic. That number leads the nation, but tourism is at 62%.

“Tourism isn’t just important in bringing people here for vacations, it’s also an economic development tool,” Rounds said.

“It includes our ability to recruit businesses, capturing CEOs [and] having major events.”

Arizona News

A certified medical assistant prepares doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination center...

Arizona reports 2,579 new COVID-19 cases, 6 more deaths Sunday

Arizona health officials on Sunday reported 2,579 new COVID-19 cases and six additional deaths from the disease.
9 hours ago
(Cave Creek Museum Photo)...

Cave Creek Museum to kick off 2021-2022 season this October

The Cave Creek Museum is set to kick off the 2021-2022 season this October with new collections, exhibits and special events, officials announced.
9 hours ago
(Photo courtesy of the city of Glendale)...
SuElen Rivera

Downtown Glendale launches mobile app to navigate city, benefit merchants

The Glendale Chamber of Commerce on Thursday launched a mobile app intended to help visitors in Downtown Glendale navigate around shops and merchants promote their products.
9 hours ago
Phoenix Fire Department photo...

Firefighters rescue injured hiker on South Mountain in helicopter

A man who fell six feet during his hike on South Mountain got transported via a helicopter to a local ambulance.
1 day ago
Near 12th Street and Northern Avenue, Phoenix. (Twitter Photo/@Crossfire923)...
SuElen Rivera

Parts of Valley sees light showers, more chances of rain this weekend

As monsoon season wraps up, parts of the Valley received some rain Friday evening heading into the weekend.
1 day ago
A woman gets a COVID-19 Pfizer booster shot in the "Im Lauesch" nursing home of Strasbourg, eastern...

Arizona reports 2,916 new COVID-19 cases, 69 more deaths Saturday

Arizona health officials on Saturday reported 2,916 new COVID-19 cases and 69 additional deaths from the disease.
1 day ago
Arizona tourism needs to reboot marketing campaign, economist says