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Tourism is a major economic driver. Tourism helps Allegheny County residents and businesses.
A message from Jerad Bachar, President and CEO
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, one statement has stood true - the only certainty is uncertainty. Uncertainty causes high levels of stress and insecurity for us all. One section of our community that is struggling the most is our business owners and workforce within the travel and hospitality industry. I don’t believe that any other industry has been affected more by policy restrictions, economic distress and loss of employment.
According to research conducted by Tourism Economics, Allegheny County’s tourism industry will have lost $3.6 billion in visitor spending and 24,540 jobs by the end of 2020. As residents, we see this impact every day as we witness the closure or reduced business levels of hotels, restaurants, museums, airlines, transportation companies, event organizers (conventions, sports and festivals), independent retailers and many others. While we understand and support the measures that have been taken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, we also mourn the temporary loss of an entire industry.
As we have seen in the past, the travel industry is resilient and can be rebuilt, allowing our neighborhood businesses to recover. Elected officials, healthcare officials and travel industry leaders have all predicted that our economic and societal recovery will take many months if not many years. The ‘new normal’ is upon us.
If this is to be the best environment in which we live, we must find ways to not only survive but to thrive. If daily COVID-19 case counts and mitigating health risks is our reality for the foreseeable future, we should strive to find a better formula for success for hundreds of businesses and thousands of workers who are trying to get by.
We can collectively thrive if:
We recognize these efforts are underway, and we have yet to reach a balance. If we are to survive - and hopefully thrive - as we move forward, we must continue to work together to find the right formula. Together, we can bring Pittsburgh back.
Travel and tourism is one of the largest industries in Allegheny County.
There are more than 12.6 million overnight trips to the Greater Pittsburgh region every year. In Allegheny County, visitor spending contributes to $6.57 billion in new dollars to the economy. How does that translate?
Data Source: PA Tourism Office, PA Department of Community & Economic Development, "The Economic Impact of Travel in Pennsylvania" for calendar year 2019, released in February 2021.
For more information on the importance of travel and tourism to Pennsylvania's economy, go to patourismequalsjobs.com.