As part of a larger celebration of National Travel & Tourism Week, the Johnston County Visitors Bureau and various partners visited the North Carolina welcome centers on Interstate 95 on May 9-10.
The list of participating partners from Johnston County included hotels, entertainment venues, shops, museums, restaurants and more. The group met with I-95 travelers throughout the day, working to increase awareness of Johnston County as a destination, providing giveaways, and even giving out food samples.
The event was part of the 36th annual National Travel and Tourism Week happening May 5-11, which unites communities across the country to celebrate how travel matters to American jobs, economic growth and personal well-being. The theme of this year’s NTTW, “Travel Matters,” highlights the innumerable ways in which travel makes up the fabric of Johnston County’s culture and economy.
“Just look at the numbers. Travel supports one in nine American jobs, including 1,860 right here in Johnston County,” said Ashby Brame, Marketing & PR manager for the Johnston County Visitors Bureau. “Through this event and NTTW in general, we are celebrating travel’s powerful impact on our community. We’re calling on everyone — from elected officials to all of our local friends and neighbors — to join us in saluting this important industry.”
Travel is powerful for cities and states, and Johnston County is no exception. State tax revenue generated in Johnston County in 2017 totaled $13.41 million through state sales and excise taxes, and taxes on personal and corporate income. About $6.08 million in local taxes were generated from sales and property tax revenue from travel-generated and travel-supported businesses.
The JCVB works annually with over 800 travel and tourism partners in the county to promote JoCo and its towns as a destination to travelers, particularly those along I-95. The Welcome Center visits during NTTW help remind travelers, welcome center staff, and even participating partners, how vital travel is to Johnston County’s communities.
“By participating in National Travel & Tourism Week, we increase visitor awareness of Johnston County,” said Brame, “but we also use it as a tool to educate locals on how much travel matters as an economic driver at the national, state, and local level.”