Gov. Nathan Deal was joined by professionals from Georgia’s tourism industry for the annual Tourism, Hospitality & Arts Day at the Capitol to recognize the $60.8 billion impact of tourism on Georgia’s economy. Industry representatives presented Deal with a check representing the $3.1 billion in state and local tax revenue generated by tourism-related expenditures.
“With a record economic impact of $60.8 billion, Georgia’s tourism industry is a powerful economic development tool for local communities and our state as a whole,” said Deal. “This impact goes well beyond direct spending by visitors, as the industry provides job opportunities for more than 450,200 Georgians, accounting for approximately 10.6 percent of the state’s non-farm workforce. As this industry continues to grow, this success reflects our state’s status as a world-class tourism destination and once again affirms that Georgia is on the minds of travelers around the globe.”
Deal also unveiled the cover of the official 2018 state travel guide, which features Georgia-native Jason Aldean, the reigning Academy of Country Music “Entertainer of the Year.” The cover photo was taken in Macon, Aldean’s hometown, at The Big House Museum where original members of The Allman Brothers Band lived and wrote some of their first songs.
“Being from Georgia is something I’m really proud of,” said Aldean. “A lot of my influences as an artist come from its musical history and it will always be a big part of who I am.”
The travel guide provides visitors with detailed information on Georgia’s tourism assets including trip ideas, attractions, accommodations and events. More than 700,000 copies will be distributed to encourage potential visitors to plan trips to enjoy authentic Georgia experiences.
“Tourism drives employment and economic growth throughout the state,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) Commissioner Pat Wilson. “This year’s Georgia Travel Guide highlights an abundance of unique experiences that set us apart from other destinations. From the beginning of the trip planning process, to the moment they arrive in our state, we want to provide the best experience for our visitors.”
The free guides are available at one of the state’s 12 visitor information centers, travel and trade shows, ExploreGeorgia.org and 1-800-VISIT GA. GDEcD partnered with Atlanta Magazine Custom Media, the award-winning publisher of Atlanta Magazine and Southbound Magazine, to produce the travel guide.