2014 may be a ‘robust’ year for Michigan’s tourism industry.
Stock markets and consumer confidence are high, housing markets are improving and unemployment is down. Michigan State University researchers say these are all factors that play a role in determining if people will take a vacation.
The MSU researchers presented their annual tourism forecast at an industry conference in Traverse City this morning.
They’re predicting a 4.5% increase in hotel receipts this year compared with 2013, which was a strong year for Michigan tourism.
“With each year of the recovery, people have more and more confidence in the economy and are therefore more comfortable,” says Dan McCole, assistant professor in MSU’s Department of Community Sustainability.
But the MSU researchers say weather remains a wild card.
Specifically, Michigan’s seemingly never ending Winter may herald a cooler than normal Summer, which may produce fewer tourists on Michigan’s beaches.