Andrew Raynor Dover NH
Nearly 10 million people are expected visit New Hampshire to see the fall colors over the next several weeks and will spend over $1 billion, reflecting an increase over last year’s foliage season.
Tourism is New Hampshire’s second largest industry and the foliage season draws people from around the world. This year, visitation, at 9.75 million people, will be 4 percent over last year and spending, at $1.5 billion, is a 5 percent increase from 2016, according to the Division of Travel and Tourism Development.
DTTD anticipates robust travel over the Columbus Day holiday, the state’s third busiest travel weekend, representing nearly 10 percent of all fall season visitations. Over that holiday weekend, about 710,000 visitors will spend more than $100 million – marking 5 percent increases in both visitation and spending compared to Columbus Day 2016.
“The continued growth in visitation and spending underscores tourism is a critical driver of New Hampshire’s economic infrastructure,” said Taylor Caswell, commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Business and Economic Affairs. “The fall tourism season, particularly viewing foliage and enjoying varied outdoor recreation, is a major contributor to New Hampshire’s tourism businesses and attractions.”
During foliage season, the largest percentage of visitors comes here from outside New England. Research partners point to a number of positive indicators, including consumer spending, consumer confidence, employment growth, wage growth, and travel expenditures, as supporting a strong fall season. Reasonable gas prices and somewhat lower domestic airline ticket prices will also bolster visitation and spending.
DTTD’s blog/video series Live Free with Kris continues through the foliage season highlighting New Hampshire’s hidden gems.