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 18 of the state’s 56 counties.
Estimates of the economic contribution of traveler spending at the statewide level showed that 11.02 million visitors spent approximately $3.62 billion in 2013, which directly supported $2.8 billion of economic activity and more than 33,000 Montana jobs.
Nonresident travelers indirectly support an additional $1.6 billion of economic activity and 14,600 jobs. Associated with those travel-related jobs is $979 million in labor income directly attributable to nonresident travel and another $525 million indirectly attributable to nonresident spending.
Focusing on the $574 million spent by nonresident travelers in the southeastern part of the state, nearly $464 million of economic activity and nearly 5,000 jobs are directly supported in the southeast Montana travel region. An additional $228 million of economic activity and 2,080 jobs are indirectly supported. A total of $147 million in labor income is directly attributable to nonresident spending, supplemented by an additional $79 million indirectly supported by traveler spending.
Custer, Dawson and Yellowstone Counties, each located within southeast Montana, also each were included in the analysis. Sixty-one million dollars of economic activity in Custer County was directly supported by the $97 million spent in the county, with an additional $26 million supported indirectly. Spending in the county directly supported 800 jobs and almost $21 million in labor income, with an additional 260 jobs and $8 million in labor income being indirectly supported.
Nonresidents spent $44 million in Dawson County, thereby directly supporting over $26 million of economic activity, 310 jobs and nearly $10 million in labor income. Indirectly supported were an additional $9 million of economic activity, 90 jobs and nearly $3 million in labor income.
In Yellowstone County, nearly $289 million of economic activity was directly supported by almost $374 million of nonresident traveler spending. This spending contributed to 3,400 jobs and the associated $97 million in labor income in the county. Indirectly supported in Yellowstone County were an additional $158 million of economic activity, 1,450 jobs and $57 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 available online at http://www.itrr.umt.edu/.