News Release

Tourism to Grand Canyon National Park Creates Economic Benefit

A group of visitors admiring a scenic overlook.


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News Release Date: May 28, 2019

Contact: Kris Fister, 928-638-7958

Grand Canyon, AZ - A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows that the 6.3 million visitors to Grand Canyon National Park in 2018 spent $947 million in communities near the park. That spending supported 12,558 jobs in the local area and had a cumulative benefit to the local economy of $1.2 billion.

"Grand Canyon National Park welcomes visitors who come from across the country and around the world," said Sarah Creachbaum, acting Superintendent. "We know that these visitors make significant contributions to the economy - local, state and national. The National Park Service appreciates the support of our partners and neighbors in providing services that enhance the experience of those who visit the park, and are proud to work with them in sustaining our communities.”

The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas and Egan Cornachione of the U.S. Geological Survey and Lynne Koontz of the National Park Service. The report shows $20.2 billion of direct spending by more than 318 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported 329,000 jobs nationally; 268,000 of those jobs are found in these gateway communities. The cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy was $40.1 billion.

Nationally, lodging expenses account for the largest share of visitor spending, about $6.8 billion in 2018. Food expenses are the second largest spending area and visitors spent $4 billion in restaurants and bars and another $1.4 billion at grocery and convenience stores.

Visitor spending on lodging supported more than 58,000 jobs and more than 61,000 jobs in restaurants across the country. Visitor spending in the recreation industries supported more than 28,000 jobs and spending in retail supported more than 20,000 jobs.

Report authors produced an interactive tool that enables users to explore visitor spending, jobs, labor income, value added, and output effects by sector for national, state, and local economies. Users can also view year-by-year trend data. The interactive tool and report are available online at the NPS Social Science webpage. 

To learn more about national parks in Arizona and how the National Park Service works with Arizona communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, visit



Last updated: May 28, 2019

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