Record breaking year in tourism dollars

May 7, 2016

San Luis Obispo County brought in $1.58 billion in tourism dollars in 2015, a record breaking year with a 4 percent increase in tourism dollars over 2014. [KSBY]

Tourism officials are already planning ways to make next years numbers even higher. The current goal is to attract more international travelers.

Travel related taxes brought in $132 million in 2015, monies used to help fund local services including fire and police departments.

In addition, tourism brought 760 new jobs to SLO County in 2015. County wide, approximately 17,900 people are employed in the tourism industry, 10.4 percent of county employment.

Santa Barbara County tourism dollars, at $1.5 billion, increased 1.7 percent from 2014 to 2015.



  1. CentralcoastRN says:

    You know, I think of the people who come in to the hospital as a result of the “festivities” SLO County has to offer– wine tasting, WOW week at Cal Poly, drinking beer all day and getting 2nd degree burns on the beach, going 4 x4 ing on the dunes drunk with no helmets….. and I think, “yep, generating that revenue….”

    PLEASE allow more drunken festivities, because I think I’m going to start asking for money based on a patient’s blood alcohol and drug levels. THAT will be AWESOME.

    (0) 0 Total Votes - 0 up - 0 down
  2. Jorge Estrada says:

    Maybe we can have the County fenced and sell E-tickets to fund the needed infrastructure upgrades.

    (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  3. Perspicacious says:

    Yeah, so now let’s raise the sales tax since we aren’t bringing in enough.


    (5) 13 Total Votes - 9 up - 4 down
    • kayaknut says:

      You need to finish the sentence. “bringing in enough…… to continue the outrageous salaries, benefits and pensions and to be able to give raises aka Christmas bonuses, all the while letting services decline and our infrastructure crumble.”

      (9) 9 Total Votes - 9 up - 0 down
  4. hijinks says:

    These sorts of monetary numbers are BS — the tourist people make them up based on assumptions how much tourists spend while here, and the assumptions are always very optimistic. That’s how the tourism industry justifies using our tax dollars to attract tourists. Didn’t know that was going on? It is. Don’t ever believe any of this propaganda.

    What’s unasked by the establishment that supports tourism is whether tourism is good for the people who live here. The answer is clear: it’s not. Aside from stealing our place from us, tourism is one of the prime drivers of housing prices upwards. Rich people from out of the area are lured to visit, then say, “Oh, it’s really nice here, why don’t we buy a house?” They are clueless how much things are worth, assume the market is like where they came from, and pay too much by local economic standards, and price the rest of us out of the market. The real estate people in SLO have a name for these buyers: “Bay Area people with money.”

    Now, add in the attraction of foreigners, and get ready to hold your hat for the impact that will have on housing prices. Rich Asians and Middle Easterners are buying up real estate like crazy in all the “desirable” metro areas, and have driven prices sky high in NYC, LA, SF and Seattle. Heck, wait till you see what this does to housing costs in SLO Co!

    (7) 21 Total Votes - 14 up - 7 down
  5. diamond says:

    Just enough to cover the raises Lichtig & Dietrick will get next year ~

    (16) 22 Total Votes - 19 up - 3 down
  6. just4fun says:

    All of SLO County has done a good job of attracting out of town dollars to create another revenue source to diversify our economy, and this shows the hard work paying off. One thing people in the North County should remember, those dollars did not come in when it was cows and grain in Paso. Grapes bring in ag revenue and tourism dollars. You may not like them, but they support a way of life that is pretty good.

    (-9) 23 Total Votes - 7 up - 16 down
    • Kaiser Bill says:

      The Grapes have led to a severe water shortage and the arrival of immigrant labor and the concomitant crime that results.

      Paso was better when it was a quiet cow town.

      (17) 31 Total Votes - 24 up - 7 down
    • Mr. Holly says:

      What way of life are you talking about? Every event is connected to wine, so what if you just want to live here in a nice place and you don’t drink wine? I guess then it’s beer, but what if you are not a beer drinker? Then maybe it will have to be cider. But in the meantime as they tout all of this tourism dollars that are paying for everything don’t forget the next scam for an increase in your sales tax so that we can create this lifestyle for the tourist with our hard earned dollars. And then if there is anything left over I would imagine that all of us tax paying property will get a rebate on our property taxes.
      I know, I know-the check is in the mail.

      (8) 10 Total Votes - 9 up - 1 down
  7. indigo1955 says:

    Let’s see…I rescued 3 pets from tourist’s cars last summer–had 2 cars towed after they came onto my property and took my assigned space–picked up tons of garbage and cigarette butts in the front area where I live (non-smoking town? touch luck.)–have asked I don’t know how many families to shut up and stop arguing at 11pm or later. I even dialed 911 after someone brandished a knife–the list goes on. There is one bright spot though. In January, I saw this hilarious bumper sticker that said “If it’s tourist SEASON–why can’t we shoot them?” Hehehe….a little wicked, that one.

    (21) 25 Total Votes - 23 up - 2 down
    • mbfog says:

      You sound just like a typical uninformed moron from Morro Bay, supporting the current council majority (Iron, Johnson and Smuckler) that is in the process of taking the town down.

      (-2) 6 Total Votes - 2 up - 4 down
  8. Ben Daho says:

    with all of the People coming from other lands, regions and cities for “Local Flavor” You’d think Slo would be more “Local Friendly” Drive down any of the streets in downtown.

    (20) 20 Total Votes - 20 up - 0 down

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