MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Officials say tourist spending in Alabama dropped 20% last year at the height of pandemic lockdowns and business closings. But the state fared better than most during the coronavirus crisis.
A statement from the Alabama Tourism Department says a travel consulting firm found a nationwide decline of 42% in travel expenditures. But Alabama’s decrease wasn’t as bad because spending was robust in Baldwin County, where the beach towns of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are located.
Visitors spent more than $13 billion on accommodations, travel, food, shopping and other items in the state in 2020. That’s down from more than $18 billion in 2019.