• Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation
  • Serving Cumberland County
  • Pennsylvania’s destination for business and leisure
Back to list

Importance of Tourism to Local Economies

01-Importance-of-Tourism-to-Local-EconomiesA thriving local economy facilitates opportunities for residents to live happier, more comfortable lives. But every region needs a little assistance to reach its full potential. Communities rely on neighboring boroughs, cities, counties and beyond for economic growth, making tourism a valuable asset — especially to smaller communities.

Why Is Local Tourism Important?

Drawing visitors from far and wide has substantial benefits. When tourists travel to a community, they bring opportunities for local business owners and the hard-working individuals who hold the area together. Ultimately, tourism paves the way for positive change. Businesses and governments allocate resources to enhance the visitor experience while improving residents’ everyday lives.

Click here to see recent statistics from the US Travel Association about the economic impact of tourism in the state and county.


An influx in tourism creates the demand for businesses to grow their service offerings. Existing companies improve their services while discovering new offerings that please out-of-town guests.

Simultaneously, new businesses emerge to add to the community. From dining options to entertainment venues, museums, transportation services, healthcare facilities and beyond, tourism encourages new developments that residents can enjoy year-round.

Job Opportunities

As new service offerings and businesses emerge in a bustling tourism community, so do employment opportunities. Existing businesses find ways to expand while new ones appear, creating new roles for locals to fill.

Industries like hospitality, food service and travel, in particular, produce new job openings. New entrepreneurial opportunities emerge as well. Services like Airbnb empower residents to earn revenue from tourists looking for a comfortable, local place to stay.


Increased tourism can motivate local governments to improve local infrastructure:

  • Accessible public transportation and smooth roadways help tourists experience more of the community.
  • Telecommunication improvements enable tourists to share their experiences with friends and family.
  • Better water and sewage systems can satisfy the increased demand while ensuring a comfortable stay.

Such improvements benefit residents daily at every economic level.


Visitors spend money with the community’s businesses. Restaurants, retail stores, boutiques and businesses of all varieties have the potential to earn more when their community attracts tourists. As a result, everyone from business owners to employees will have more to spend within the local economy. The increase in sales tax revenue will fund important infrastructural and environmental endeavors in the community.


Tourism helps preserve and evolve a community’s culture. Visitors eagerly engage in the history and traditions that make the town tick, providing an opportunity for locals to embrace their roots. Local museums and historical sites can see increased attendance, while the community’s artists can spread their stories and tell new ones.

Meanwhile, tourists bring their perspectives and traditions to the communities they visit. The cultural interchanges that coincide with tourism can have lasting positive effects on the community.

Help CAEDC Support & Grow Tourism

Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC) is also the designated destination marketing organization for Cumberland Valley and responsible for promoting the area’s attractions, shops, restaurants, and lodging properties. View our tourism site at www.VisitCumberlandValley.com to learn more. While the tourism arm of CAEDC is non-membership, please contact us to learn how you can participate with the tourism-side of our agency.

Contact Us


Print Friendly, PDF & Email