The economic impact of tourism in Kentucky amounted to $10.8 billion in 2009, according to figures released last month by the state’s Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet.
“Kentucky’s tourism industry held its own during a dramatic downturn in the national economy,” Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Marcheta Sparrow said.
Compared to the year 2008, the economic impact figure was down 1.9 percent. Hotel occupancy in Kentucky dropped 2.8 percent in 2009, compared to a national drop of 8.6 percent, according to Smith Travel Research.
The tourism regions in mostly rural areas saw small gains while the tourism regions that include Louisville, Lexington and Northern Kentucky experienced declines in economic impact figures.
The impact figures are based on such things as tourist spending at attractions, overnight hotel stays, campgrounds, tax data, attendance figures and airline business. The analysis was conducted by Certec Inc. of Lexington.