Muriel Bowser

DC Saw a Record Number of Domestic Tourists in 2018

Nearly 22 million domestic tourists visited Washington, D.C., last year -- which is 1 million more tourists than the year before, according to Destination DC.

The nonprofit marketing organization said in a news released that 2018 was the ninth consecutive year the city saw tourism growth. According to IHS Markit, tourists spent a record $7.8 billion and generated $851 million in D.C. taxes.

Looking at the spending further, Destination DC found that leisure travelers accounted for 61 percent of visitors and 43 percent of spending. Leisure spending is up 13 percent year-over-year. Business travelers accounted for 39 percent of visitors and 57 percent of spending.

"An additional 1.1 million domestic visitors to D.C. year-over-year is a big deal for the city," Destination DC President and CEO Elliott Ferguson said in the release. "As we market the city through our 'Discover the Real DC campaign,' we continue to show potential visitors that there’s so much more to see and do in Washington, DC beyond the federal government and build on our momentum that’s sustaining visitation to the city."

Tourism spending supported 76,522 jobs in D.C. in 2018, which is 2 percent higher than the number of jobs supported in 2017, according to Destination DC.

"The continued growth of our city’s tourism industry reflects the overall strength and success of Washington, DC," Mayor Muriel Bowser said in the release.

The organization hopes to garner more tourism through events such as the reopening of the International Spy Museum in L'Enfant Plaza on May 12, DC Bike Ride on May 18 and DC Jazz Festival on June 7-16.

Contact Us