Alaska visitor numbers reach an all-time high

Visitors to Alaska reached an all-time high of 1,966,700 visitors between May 1, 2013, and April 30, 2014, according to a report recently released by the Alaska Division of Economic Development. 

The Interim Visitor Volume Report 2013-14 shows that visitation exceeded the previous peak of 1,961,500 visitors, set during 2007-08, by more than 5,000 visitors, according to a press release.

“Alaska’s tourism industry enjoyed a robust 2013,” said Susan Bell, commissioner of the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, or DCCED. “Increased cruise ship calls and new air service, including domestic and international routes, are driving the growth.”

The report highlights recovery in Alaska visitor numbers in recent years. More than 6 percent growth during the 2013-14 visitor season marks the most significant period of growth in a single year since 2005-06, and the third consecutive year of growth after the recession-impacted period of 2008-09 to 2010-11.

“We are seeing the benefits of an effective tourism marketing program, exemplified by events like NBC’s recent broadcast of the Today Show from Juneau, which featured some of the state’s many travel attractions,” said Bell.

A strong marketing program, combined with reduced taxes, reasonable regulations and a positive business environment are all part of a comprehensive strategy to grow Alaska’s tourism industry, according to the press release.

The interim visitor volume report is part of the Alaska Visitor Statistics Program VI and is found at http://www.commerce.alaska.gov/dnn/ded/DEV/TourismDevelopment/TourismResearch.aspx. 

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