The Wyoming Office of Tourism announced today in a press release the negative economic impact 2020 had on tourism.

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According to the report, the travel economy of Wyoming declined by 23%, compared to the U.S. as a whole, which declined by 36%.

According to the press release, Diane Shober, executive director of the Wyoming Office of Tourism, said:

“Last year was unprecedented for the world and travel industry, but as the least populated state, Wyoming was uniquely positioned as a destination for those looking to enjoy wide-open spaces in a socially-distant environment,” Shober said. “Our local communities and businesses worked hard this past year to safely welcome visitors, and we are now in a much better position because of their resiliency.”

The report highlights several key areas where Wyoming travel fell short, including 6.9 million overnight visitors into the state, a decrease of 25.6% from 2019.

Natrona County saw a decrease of 35%, down approximately 350,000 from 2019, moving it from fourth to fifth in terms of number of visitors.

Something that took a large hit was travel related employment which lost 3,940 jobs, a decrease of 12.1%, going from 32,570 jobs in 2019 to 28,629 2020.

In terms of spending related to travel, that took a big hit as well, falling by over $900 million.

Natrona County in particular lost over $100 million from direct travel spending in 2020, down 32%.

The report also looked at the decrease in tax revenue the state received due to decreases in travel, with the state generating $160 million in travel related tax revenue, a 21.4%, or $43 million, decrease from 2019.

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