Published August 13 2010
North Dakota tourism reports strong numbersBISMARCK – North Dakota is on track for an outstanding summer travel season, the state Tourism Division said Thursday.
Year-to-date revenue per available hotel room is up 10.8 percent, national park visitation is up 20 percent, and airline boardings are up 12 percent statewide, according to a news release from Tourism Director Sara Otte Coleman.
In addition, Canadian border crossings are up 24 percent from last year and are 15 percent higher than the five-year average.
Inquiries from Canadians planning North Dakota trips are up 400 percent, Otte Coleman said.
“While several states are now showing increases for 2009, North Dakota is unique, having continued growth over 2009, which also posted strong increases,” Otte Coleman said in a statement.
North Dakota Tourism introduced a new digital version of the visitors’ guide this spring that attracted more than 13,000 views through the end of June. Potential visitors printed 1,398 pages from the guide as well. Overall, new visitors to www.NDTourism.com are up 31 percent year to date, Otte Coleman said.
Major attractions are up 7 percent, as are state park visitors. Local visitor centers saw a 6 percent year-to-date increase.
Otte Coleman said early insights are that Canadians are coming in increasing numbers thanks to the better exchange rate.
“But we are also seeing strong traffic from our other target markets and beyond. Business/leisure traffic is also strong,” Otte Coleman said. “We can guess our ad campaign and increasing national media coverage on North Dakota is paying off with increased visitors.”
The Tourism Division will conduct a study this fall to better understand who came to North Dakota and why, she said.