Tourism creates jobs, drives the local economy, enhances lifestyle and culture, and helps to support local government programs, nonprofits, and regional parks.
Tourism Means Jobs
The tourism industry is one of the largest employers in Sonoma County, with hospitality employment comprising one in 10 jobs. (22,345 jobs in 2019. Source: Dean Runyan/Visit CA: "Sonoma County Travel Impacts 2019").
Tourism Means Economic Prosperity
State and local government revenue generated by the local tourism industry ($203.5 million in 2019) is used to help support regional parks, economic development, arts and culture, education, roads, public safety, education, affordable housing and workforce development among other community programs.
Without these travel-generated tax revenues, each Sonoma County household would have to pay an average of $1,071 more in taxes each year to maintain the same level of public services. (Dean Runyan: Sonoma County Travel Impacts)
Additionally, local tourism supports opportunity and growth in other parts of the local economy. “Statistics show that hospitality and tourism has outperformed the aggregate of all other export sectors since 1998, with employment expanding nearly 10 percent in tourism while others showed negative gain of almost -1 percent. Econometric tests show that employment shifts in the visitor economy are followed in subsequent years by sustained changes in growth in other parts of the economy.” (Destination Promotion: An Engine of Economic Development, Oxford Economics)
Economic growth across all business sectors, keep Sonoma County thriving and relevant. A strong local economy is essential to supporting a healthy community.
Tourism Gives Back to Our Community
Sonoma County's tourism and hospitality industry does much more than provide hotel space, restaurant meals, outdoor activities and entertainment, wine tasting, and gorgeous views - we care about our local community.
According to a recent report by Economic Forensics and Analytics, Inc, nine out of 10 Sonoma County hospitality businesses give back to their community. Local hospitality-related businesses donated more than $43.9 million annually in cash, in-kind, and volunteer-hour contributions.
Sonoma County Tourism Cares
Sonoma County Tourism is honored to have sponsored and facilitated 20 Tourism Cares events over the past four years. We are always grateful our generous tourism and hospitality industry for coming out in force to lend a hand and give back to a destination and that has given so much to us all.
Destination Marketing is Essential to Sonoma County’s Success
Effective destination marketing creates opportunities and benefits for local businesses, government, public services, and residents in Sonoma County. To continue to see a year over year increase in tax revenue, Sonoma County needs to keep our marketing efforts on par with our competitors. Investing in our destination provides unlimited returns.
National Travel and Tourism Week, May 3-9
Established in 1983 by President Reagan, National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW) is the annual salute to travel in America. During the first full week in May, communities nationwide unite around a common theme to showcase travel’s contributions to the economy and American jobs. This year, the travel industry is celebrating the “Spirit of Travel” to remind our country that even in the most difficult of times, the spirit of travel cannot be broken.
Sonoma County National Travel & Tourism Toolkit:
- Free #HospitalityStrong posters (reserve yours here!)
- A special industry unity Facebook profile frame
- Fun Sonoma County puzzles to play (a new puzzle for each day of NTTW)
- A showcase of Sonoma County hospitality and tourism businesses lit in pinot purple
- And our ongoing Tourism Cares blood drive (save lives and earn prizes!)