SHREVEPORT, LA - Things are looking good for Louisiana on the tourism front. Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser says there has been an increase in visits and tourist spending during 2023. Nungesser says more than 420 thousand more people visited the state last year, pushing the total over the 43 million mark.

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The Lt. Governor says those guests spent 5% more than we saw in 2022.

Where Are the Tourists Coming From?

Nungesser says international visitors saw the biggest gain increasing 17% and spending almost 2 billion dollars.

We know those international tourists stay longer, spend more money and they don't just go to one city or one town. They get off the beaten path and want to see how Louisianans live.

Every year he says our state tries to  pick specific markets to travel to in an effort to bring international visitors to our state. Nungesser says the international market has grown thanks in part to a grant from the US Commerce Department to promote Louisiana as a tourist destination to markets overseas.

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What Areas Are We Focusing on Now?

Nungesser says we are concentrating our efforts now on India, Italy and Spain. Nungesser is currently in Europe promoting travel to the Bayou State.

These efforts might pay off even though the US Travel Association doesn’t predict international visitation will completely recover until 2025.  But Nungesser says the numbers in Louisiana show that tourism is coming back quite strong.

Not only did the visitors spend money in our communities, but Nungesser says these guests spent almost 2 billion in state and local taxes, saving each household in Louisiana over a thousand dollars a year in taxes.

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