NH Tourism Expected to be Lively This WinterPosted on December 16th, 2011 No comments
State tourism officials announced this week that winter travel in New Hampshire is expected to show increased amounts of visitors and spending, providing a positive outlook for the 2011 – 2012 season. This is good news, especially considering that the tourism industry across the Northeast took a big hit at the end of summer when Hurricane Irene passed through.
According to a report prepared for the New Hampshire Division of Travel and Tourism Development (DTTD) by the Institute for New Hampshire Studies (INHS), an estimated 6.6 million people are predicted to visit during this year’s winter season, up by three percent from last year. Spending by tourists and business travelers is expected to increase as well, with the projection being seven percent above last winter, possibly reaching about $850 million. Studies show that December, January, and February see approximately 18 percent of all traveler visits and 20 percent of total traveler spending annually.
The big draw in the wintertime is New Hampshire’s abundance of wilderness and skiing, as well as tax-free shopping. “Outdoor recreation, including skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling, and shopping are the most popular reasons for visiting New Hampshire during the winter,” said Lori Harnois, Director for DTTD. “While here, visitors can check out zip-lines, mountain coasters, dog-sledding, and other winter fun.”
Most hotels, resorts, and motels will likely have higher occupancy rates than last winter. According to the report, overnight trips to the state’s ski areas will likely increase by two percent above last year’s level, while day trips to the ski areas should increase by an estimated three percent. Evidence of this is being seen already at The Inns & Spa at Mill Falls, where the resort’s annual New Year’s Eve Gala is already sold out! The weekend of the Pond Hockey Classic in early February is expected to be bigger and better than the first two years as well.
The economy in the New England region has been growing at a faster rate than nationally, showing good signs of recovery after the crash in 2008. Business and conference travel is also predicted to increase by five percent above last winter, in part due to another big factor—the New Hampshire Primary.
Those who plan to travel to New Hampshire this winter should take note of the expected increase in tourism and make reservations early—the season is off to a great start!
The Mill Falls Blogging Team
photo courtesy of New England Pond Hockey ClassicIn the news, Meredith, New Hampshire Events and Activities Meredith, Mill Falls, NH Primary, pond hockey, Tourism
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