OKC travel sector generates over $4 billion in economic impact
OKLAHOMA CITY – A recent research report conducted by Tourism Economics found that visitors to Oklahoma City generated an annual economic impact of $4.3 billion from 23.2 million visitors in 2022. By tracing the flow of visitor-related expenditures through the city’s economy and their effects on employment, wages and taxes, the report found that tourism has a dramatic effect on the health of OKC’s local economy.
“We’ve had various indicators that our visitor economy had surpassed pre-pandemic levels, but this data gives us a deeper understanding of the power of tourism in Oklahoma City,” said Zac Craig, Visit Oklahoma City President. “A total economic impact of more than $4 billion from the travel sector is very exciting. And we expect tourism’s economic impact to continue climbing as Visit OKC elevates our destination marketing across national and international audiences and partners add new attractions throughout the city.”
In 2022, 23.2 million visitors directly spent $2.6 billion across a range of sectors – including food and beverage (26%), retail (23%), recreation and entertainment (19%), lodging (18%) and transportation (15%). This total economic impact sustained more than 33,888 jobs and generated $343 million in state and local tax revenues in 2022.
“This study details the direct effect of tourism in OKC, but we also see the additional ways travel spending positively impacts other industries such as real estate, insurance and various business services that support tourism-related organizations,” said Christy Gillenwater, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber President and CEO. “In addition, the total jobs impact approximately one of every 20 jobs in Oklahoma City. That’s 5% of our workforce supporting tourism right here in Oklahoma City.”
Oklahoma City’s future as a tourism destination is on the rise.
"Oklahoma City has invested in itself with entertainment venues and districts through the MAPS program for decades, and this investment is paying dividends,” said Craig. “Our entire community has blossomed because of MAPS, which can be seen in our new convention center complex, streetcar infrastructure and world-class attractions and districts that elevate us as a meetings and sports destination and leisure travel destination.”
For additional highlights from the 2022 OKC Tourism Economic Impact study, click here.
About Visit Oklahoma City
Visit Oklahoma City (Visit OKC) is a division of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce. Visit OKC is the tourism information source for visitors to and the citizens of Oklahoma City, as well as the home to OKC Sports. As the City’s official destination marketing organization, the mission of Visit OKC is to contribute to the economic well-being of Oklahoma City and its citizens through the solicitation and servicing of conventions, sporting events and other related group business, to promote the city as a first-class visitor destination, and to enhance Oklahoma City's name and image.