Memphis CVB Celebrates Positive Effects of Travel

Business Leaders, Workers and Government Officials Join Together to Tout the Significant Economic Impact of Travel

The Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau, in partnership with the Downtown Memphis Commission, will host residents, visitors and hospitality employees in a “Pop Up Vacation” at Court Square on Wednesday, May 7 from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. This event represents the travel community’s collective call to showcase the importance and impact of travel on jobs and economic growth in Memphis.

Visitors will be able to experience their own mini vacation with a putting green courtesy of Mirimichi, a forge from the Metal Museum, an Elvis tribute artist, visits from local sports mascots, cars from the Rusty Wallace Racing Experience, Yellow Cab and American Dream Safari, and activities for kids of all ages. The Peabody Hotel is even going to fill the water fountain with hundreds of rubber ducks. 

The gathering amplifies the U.S. Travel Association’s multiyear campaign – known as the Travel Effect – to prove the huge impact that travel and tourism has on our lives, businesses and local, state and national economies.

“The numbers tell the story: Travel supports 14.9 million jobs across the nation, including over 35,000 right here in Memphis, Tennessee,” said Kevin Kane, president and CEO of the Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Not only does our Pop Up Vacation event and National Travel and Tourism Week celebrate the benefits of travel in our community, but it also allows us to inform elected officials and local citizens about the industry’s true widespread effect in Tennessee and across America.”

Locally, the Travel Effect is especially significant:

  • Over 10 million visitors come to Memphis every year.
  • Visitor expenditures exceed $3.2 billion annually.
  • $135.54 million in local taxes are generated from tourism. 

Across Tennessee, travel employs a diverse workforce, from airline and hotel employees, to restaurant, attraction and retail workers, as well as supports employees in other industry sectors such as construction, manufacturing and finance.

The Travel Effect is felt nationwide as well:

  • $887.9 billion in travel-related spending;
  • $133.9 billion generated in federal, state and local tax revenues; and
  • $14.9 million American jobs supported – good paying jobs that cannot be outsourced.

In addition, travel promotes physical and physiological health, as well as improves workplace productivity. In 2013, the average U.S. employee skipped 3.2 days of paid time off. According to a recent study, if workers used all of their available paid time off, the U.S. economy would gain $160 billion in additional annual business sales, which would support 1.2 million new jobs and generate $21 billion in new annual tax revenues. If employees would take just one additional day of earned leave each year, it would add $73 billion annually to the U.S. GDP.

“It is now empirical, rather than just anecdotal, that travel is a key driver for improving individual health and strengthening our business and economy,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, the umbrella organization representing the U.S. travel industry. “Travel holds measurable benefits for our minds, bodies, relationships, business and economy. Travel should be celebrated every day.”

Complete reports and data related to the Travel Effect, including “The Day Off Dividend,” bottom-line impact of business travel and the impact of government meetings on public- and private-sector development, are available at