Apr 18th 2024

Experience Kissimmee Highlights Tourism's $10 Billion Economic Impact

Experience Kissimmee released new research data by Tourism Economics on the impact of tourism on Osceola County. To highlight this impact on the community, Experience Kissimmee has launched a Value of Tourism campaign in collaboration with REACH, a Kissimmee-based marketing company. 

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Kissimmee, Fla. (April 2024)— Experience Kissimmee released new research data by Tourism Economics on the impact of tourism on Osceola County. The research concluded that the tourism industry generated a $10 billion economic impact between 2022 and 2023. 

Osceola County saw approximately 10 million overnight visitors and nearly $6.5 billion in visitor spending, contributing to a record-breaking year of Tourism Development Tax (TDT). These tremendous numbers are evidence of how the tourism industry plays an important role in shaping the daily lives of Osceola County residents. 

"A visit to Kissimmee offers more than just endless good weather and incredible visitor experiences. It also translates into tangible benefits for our residents,” said DT Minich, President and CEO of Experience Kissimmee. “For every person we welcome to Kissimmee, it means job opportunities, tax relief, competitive wages and an improved community for Osceola County residents.” 

To highlight this impact on the community, Experience Kissimmee has launched a Value of Tourism campaign in collaboration with REACH, a Kissimmee-based marketing company. 

The timing of this campaign, coinciding with the U.S. Travel Association's National Travel and Tourism Week, planned for May 19-25 this year, is particularly fitting as it is a time to celebrate the impact of tourism across the nation and how travel drives economic growth, cultivates vibrant communities and enriches the lives of Americans nationwide. 

Tourism Creates Jobs 

Tourism is the largest industry in Central Florida, surpassing the national average and sustaining 450,000 jobs, approximately 37 percent of the workforce. In Osceola County, the industry provides approximately 39,000 jobs, approximately 36 percent of the workforce, ranging from entry-level to high-paying management positions. 

Tourism Saves Osceola County Residents $4,700 

In 2022, state and local taxes collected from visitor activity in Osceola County totaled approximately $640 million. This revenue funds essential programming in the region, such as community events, sporting facilities, the arts and public schools, saving an average of $4,700 per household in taxes. 

"Experience Kissimmee is proud to serve such a dynamic county and industry,” said Minich. “More than $1 billion in direct visitor spending in our community's businesses resulted from our organization’s sales and marketing. Our estimates indicate that for every dollar invested in Experience Kissimmee through the TDT, we return $43 in economic impact to the local community.” 

Tourism Gives Back to the Community 

In 2023, Osceola County collected a record total of $81 million in TDT, surpassing the $76 million mark from the previous year. With this exponential increase in TDT collections, Experience Kissimmee paid more than $5.3 million in funding to community non-profits over the last two years, 2023 and 2024, to advance cultural and historical entities, including the Osceola Arts, Osceola County Historical Society and the Silver Spurs Riding Club. 

In addition to financial contributions, Experience Kissimmee’s partnership with Trees4Travel is making a significant environmental impact. The organization plants a tree for every room night booked in Osceola County through its meetings incentive program. Since the program's inception in May of 2023, Experience Kissimmee has planted more than 17,000 trees globally, fostering a sense of environmental responsibility and sustainability within the organization and with its clients and partners. 

To learn more about the Value of Tourism in Osceola County, visit www.experiencekissimmee.com/impact.  

To find all data related to the Tourism Economics study here: www.cfhla.org/economic-impact-of-tourism. 

 

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About Experience Kissimmee:
Experience Kissimmee is the official tourism authority for Osceola County, Florida. Located at the heart of Central Florida, Kissimmee is 25 minutes from Orlando International Airport (MCO), minutes from world-famous theme parks and attractions, and nestled in carefully preserved outdoor spaces so visitors can reconnect with nature. Also known as the Vacation Home Capital of the World®, Kissimmee has sprawling resorts with thousands of options ranging from two-bedroom condominiums to 15-bedroom mansions. 

Media Contact:
Experience Kissimmee Communications Department [email protected]