MS: Top travel spending market in U.S. for 2020

Despite COVID drawback and across the board hits to tourism across the nation, Coastal Mississippi has been placed as one of the highest performing destinations in the nation last year.

Coastal Mississippi’s recovery plan helped to continue our area’s momentum to keep building and even grow in the wake of COVID.

Mississippi was a top travel spending market in the United States in 2020. State lawmakers awarded Coastal Mississippi $3.4 million from the Tourism Recovery Fund, setting up our area for success when we needed it most, accord to Coastal Mississippi CEO Milton Segarra. “We’ve been able to put together the very initiative, objective. We were able to get the funding to support that, and at the end, we are seeing the numbers that make Mississippi, and certainly one-third of all the activities that happen in Mississippi are here in Coastal Mississippi, so we’re seeing the growth in that respect.”

Roxy Condrey, owner of the Roost Boutique Hotel in Ocean Springs, agrees. She says things have been looking up and they’re making up for lost time and revenue at an impressive pace. “Through the COVID pandemic and everything that’s happened in 2020, we have seen quite a bit of travelers from the surrounding areas that otherwise would have been traveling a little farther away, but have decided to stay closer to home and have come here to the Coast to visit our hotels here and at the Roost.”

According to an 18-month tourism study, our area will continue to be on the uptick with benefits spilling over into other areas of our local economy. “Also, we have to factor in the recent numbers say the GDP for our nation will grow between 7- to 10-percent.  The amount of savings the families in our nation have been able to accumulate is in excess of $1.8 million, and driving is the preferred method when going on vacation. When you put all that together, it’s very positive and shows we should continue to see growth in our business.”

With local businesses perched in better positions than this time one year ago and flocking to reap the benefits together.

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