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Tourism industry in Arkansas posts broad rebound from pandemic disruption

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Little Rock, Arkansas — With double-digit percentage gains in tax revenue compared to the pre-pandemic months of January and February 2020, hospitality tax collections and tourism job numbers in the first two months of 2022 show a post-COVID-19 recovery.

Arkansas’ 2% tourism tax revenue in January and February was $2.704 million, up 48% compared with the $1.827 million in the same period of 2021 and up 17.6% over the same period in 2019. The 2021 collections of the tax ($20.544 million) set an annual record for the tax, and January and February 2022 set new monthly records.

January-February hospitality tax collections among 17 cities surveyed for the Arkansas Tourism Ticker were up 27.3% compared with the same period in 2021, and up 14.5% compared with the same period in 2020.

The Arkansas Tourism Ticker is managed by Talk Business & Politics and sponsored by the Arkansas Hospitality Association. The ticker uses the following three measurements to review the health of the state’s tourism industry.

• Hospitality tax collections – prepared food tax and lodging tax – of 17 Arkansas cities;

• Tourism sector employment numbers as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; and

• Collections of Arkansas’ 2% statewide tourism tax.

 

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