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SC’s Travel and Tourism Week celebrates the states tourism industry and growth

Governor McMaster highlighted SC’s tourism’s $29 billion impact and we break down local and regional tourism stats.

South Carolina Travel and Tourism Week 2024.jpg

Governor Henry McMaster announced SC’s Travel and Tourism Week during an “industry champions” celebration at the Governor’s Mansion, which gathered tourism leaders from every corner of the state. | Photo provided by Discover South Carolina

Gov. Henry McMaster declared May 19-25, 2024, as South Carolina Travel and Tourism Week, celebrating the industry’s role in boosting the state’s economy, workforce, and quality of life.

Quick SC growth + ranking stats

  • According to the U.S. Census Bureau, SC was the fastest-growing state in the nation in December 2023.
  • Greenville and Charleston were ranked in the top 15, (with Greenville being in the top five) as being some of the Best Places to Live in the US in 2024-2025, according to US News and World Report.
  • Columbia was ranked No. 5 on Southern Living’s “The South’s Best Cities On The Rise 2024" list + Spartanburg took the No. 3 spot.
  • In 2023, Columbia, Greenville, and Charleston received the No. 1, 2, and 3 rankings in Travel + Leisure’s “9 Best Places to Live in SC, According to Real Estate Experts” article.
  • Fort Mill received the No. 13 ranking on the U.S. Census Bureau’s 15 fastest-growing US cities list, seeing a population increase of 8.8% from July 2022 to July 2023. The Columbia metro area also experienced growth in 2023, with a 1.2% increase.

Tourism impact on SC

  • One in 10 South Carolinians work in hospitality, supporting over 200,000 jobs.
  • The annual economic impact of tourism exceeds $29 billion.
  • Tourism-related tax collections reduce each resident’s annual tax burden by nearly $1,000.

“Visitors are continuing to choose SC,” Gov. McMaster said. “They plan their trips to relax on our beaches, dine in our world-class restaurants, stroll our safe city streets, and appreciate our unparalleled beauty. Our sincere hospitality is what keeps them coming back.”

Tourism impact on our area

According to the latest tourism data provided by Experience Columbia, 15.8 million visitors helped generate $130 million in state + local taxes, which led to a $2.6 billion economic impact, and 22,300 jobs created.

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