MISSOULA – An analysis recently completed by the Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research at the University of Montana highlights the economic contribution of nonresident travel spending to each of the six travel regions in Montana, as well as 15 of the state’s 56 counties.
Previous estimates of the economic contribution of traveler spending at the statewide level showed that 10.8 million visitors spent approximately $3.27 billion in 2012, which directly supported $2.6 billion of economic activity and nearly 30,000 Montana jobs.
Nonresident travelers indirectly support an additional $1.6 billion of economic activity and 13,000 jobs. Associated with those travel-related jobs is $805 million in labor income directly attributable to nonresident travel and another $448 million indirectly attributable to nonresident spending.
Focusing on the $714.4 million spent by nonresident travelers in the northwestern part of the state, $471.9 million of economic activity and nearly 6,600 jobs are directly supported in Glacier Country. An additional $304.8 million of economic activity and more than 2,900 jobs are indirectly supported. Directly attributed to nonresident spending is $167.7 million in labor income, supplemented by an additional $92.8 million indirectly supported by traveler spending.
Flathead, Glacier and Missoula Counties, each located within Glacier Country, also were each included in the analysis. $195.1 million of economic activity in Flathead County was directly supported by the $290.4 million spent in the county, with an additional $123.2 million supported indirectly. Nearly 2,800 jobs and more than $72.2 million in labor income was directly supported by the spending in the county, with an additional 1,200 jobs and $38.1 million in labor income being indirectly supported.
Nonresidents spent $75.5 million in Glacier County, thereby directly supporting more than $52.1 million of economic activity, 770 jobs and more than $19.4 million in labor income. Indirectly supported was an additional $12.9 million of economic activity, 130 jobs and $3.3 million in labor income.
In Missoula County, $166.7 million of economic activity was directly supported by $258.8 million of nonresident traveler spending. This spending contributed to nearly 2,200 jobs and the associated $59.2 million in labor income in the county. Indirectly supported in Missoula County was an additional $113.1 million of economic activity, 1,080 jobs and $37.1 million in labor income.
The full report, including estimates of the economic contribution of nonresident traveler spending in the other five Montana travel regions, as well as additional county-level estimates is online at http://www.itrr.umt.edu/.