Navigation

Tourism Spending Breaks Records – Again

Gov. Tony Evers and Wisconsin Department of Tourism Secretary Anne Sayers said Wisconsin’s tourism industry had a record-breaking year in 2023, with $25 billion in total economic impact, surpassing the previous record year of $23.7 billion set in 2022.

That included more than $15 billion in direct visitor spending.

Evers said the state hosted 113 million visits – nearly 2 million more than the previous year, and saw the highest-ever overnight visits, with nearly 46 million overnight visits last year. 

This is the second consecutive year of record-breaking overnight visitation. What’s more, overnight visitors, on average, spend almost three times as much as day-trip visitors, Evers said.

Tourism in Door County had the eighth-highest total economic impact among all Wisconsin’s 72 counties ($620 million, up 5.7 percent). The counties with a higher impact are Milwaukee County ($4.1 billion); Dane County ($2.5 billion); Sauk County ($1.9 billion); Waukesha County ($1.6 billion); Brown County ($1.3 billion); Walworth County ($954 million); and Outagamie County ($724 million).

Statewide, the total economic impact was a 5.4 percent increase over the previous year’s high of $23.7 billion.

In direct visitor spending, Door County was also in the top 10 ($497 million, up 5.6 percent).

The tourism totals in other area counties included Manitowoc, $226 million (up 4.2 percent); and Kewaunee, $52 million (up 6.2 percent).

In total in 2023, all 72 Wisconsin counties saw economic impact growth, and the industry supported more than 178,000 part-time and full-time jobs across various sectors, which is an increase of two percent and generated $1.6 billion in state and local tax revenue, up 5.8 percent from 2022.

“Wisconsin tourism powers the economy and strengthens the fabric of communities of all sizes,” said Sayers. “The historic impact of tourism reached every corner of Wisconsin and, in doing so, sustained livelihoods for thousands of our friends and neighbors.”

The tourism industry supported more than 178,000 part-time and full-time jobs, including more than 3,400 in Door County.

To learn more about the record-breaking year, go to industry.travelwisconsin.com/research/economic-impact/.