Tourists overlooking Niagara Falls

Exploring New York State is an amazing business

With 11 geographically diverse regions, New York’s world-class tourism industry is ready to welcome, host and support all the visitors who come to enjoy the beauty and wonder of our great state. New York’s tourism businesses become both visitor destinations and economic drivers in a number of spectacular settings, from awe-inspiring city lights to Adirondack peaks, Catskills trails, and the mist of Niagara Falls. With direct tourism spending reaching a record-high $64.8 billion in 2016, tourism is the state’s fourth-largest employer. 

239

Million

visitors to New York State in 2016

914,000

Jobs

sustained by tourism in 2016

$8.2

Billion

revenue in state and local sales taxes generated by tourism

Key facts

Tourism is growing in every corner of the state as businesses draw visitors to unique attractions and breathtaking destinations from upstate New York to the Hamptons. Here’s how New York helps the industry feel right at home:

  • One out of every 12 jobs in New York is tourism-related, making it one the state’s top sources of employment.
  • In 2016, tourist spending on lodging rose 3.2% to $17.2 billion, followed by food service, which jumped 5.7% to $16.67 billion.
  • 70% of New York State’s traveler spending base came from domestic markets in 2016.

New York State offers the perfect environment for growing tourism

Thanks to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s support of tourism in New York State, the industry has seen increases in spending, state and local tax revenue, visitors, and employment since 2011, and a record-breaking economic impact of $104.8 billion in 2016.

The state’s support is showcased by a $70-million commitment announced in 2016 to support the growth of New York’s tourism industry. The state has also embarked on major renovations of key tourism hubs, including expanding access and creating new amenities at LaGuardia Airport and constructing a new state-of-the-art hotel at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

With visitor spending up 30.2% since 2010, tourism continues to generate billions and positively impact the vibrant economy of New York State.

Financial Incentives for Tourism Businesses in New York State


Companies and organizations that strengthen tourism and attract visitors to New York State by promoting destinations, attractions, and special events may be eligible for grants.

Market NY

Companies and organizations that strengthen tourism and attract visitors to New York State by promoting destinations, attractions, and special events may be eligible for grants.
Learn More

Tourism Matching Funds Program

The Division of Tourism offers matching funds to help local regions reach new market areas and expand programs that generate overnight stays.
Learn More

Other funding opportunities

Tax incentives, grants, and other financial and operational support to help your business grow and thrive.
Learn More

Industry Contact

Molly Bauer
Industry Development Associate; Craft Beverages and Tourism
  • Tourism
(518) 292-5200