By Kate Raddatz

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (WCCO) — As September begins, Minnesota is wrapping up a successful summer tourism season. Explore Minnesota surveyed 300 businesses: hotels, resorts, campgrounds, and home rentals. They found business was growing for 80% of them.

Tourism is a $15.3 billion industry in Minnesota. The state’s promotions office Explore Minnesota says summer revenue was up this summer for close to half of the tourism businesses surveyed. Only 28% said it went down.

Explore Minnesota credited the state’s affordable getaways in both urban and natural attractions. It’s what drew Washington, D.C. bride-to-be Emily Goodstein to the state at the Minnesota State Fair along with her friends for a bachelorette party and end-of-summer getaway.

“People from Minnesota seem to love it here,” Goodstein said.

Explore Minnesota also cited lower gas prices this summer as a factor for more travel.

“You’re going up north, you’re hanging out with friends, you gotta fill up your tank so when you can cut your prices a little bit it’s very beneficial,” Lindsay Philips, from East Bethel, said.

The summer travel season accounts for 37% of the year’s tourism revenue in Minnesota.  Around 73 million people visit the state each year.



Kate Raddatz