More vacationers are flocking to the Sunshine State, bringing with them more money for the economy and more money in their pockets.
More than 70,000 people visited the state last year, the state’s tourism bureau reported Thursday, up from 55,000 in 2016.
That’s a jump of more than $5 million.
Florida’s beach season usually starts in July, and many visitors spend a few weeks or months on the beach.
In 2018, it ended, with just five weeks of beach days.
That number jumped to about 22 weeks last year.
More people will spend money this year, according to the state.
The beach industry is booming.
In addition to the $2.5 billion the state spent on tourism last year and the $1.9 billion that will be spent this year and next, more than 30 percent of the state was built around the resort industry.
So if you’re planning on going to a resort in Florida this year or next, make sure to spend.
There are lots of perks to visiting, like discounted admission and other perks.
For example, there’s a discounted $2,000 cruise ship ticket to Disney World that you can buy at the Disney Store, plus a $100 Disney Visa gift card.
In January, the Florida Legislature passed legislation to encourage tourism, including by creating a tourism tax credit for every $1 spent.
The credit, up to $250, is available to visitors who visit at least once in their lives.
And as of last year only residents of Florida are eligible for the credit.
So, if you want to spend a weekend in Florida, make it count.
It’s an investment in the future of the Sunshine state.
Florida is also planning a tourism commission, which would be tasked with developing a plan to increase tourism.
So far, the commission has recommended a plan for a more efficient system for booking vacations, and it has also proposed setting up a tourism agency that would have the authority to hire and fire staff.