Domestic and international visitors to and within Greenville-Pitt County spent $257.06 million in 2021, an increase of 41.9% from 2020. The data comes from an annual study commissioned by Visit North Carolina, a unit of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina.

“We are pleased to see a significant increase in tourism related spending from 2020 levels,” states Andrew Schmidt, President & CEO of Visit Greenville, NC. “I am confident that this trend will continue and Greenville-Pitt County tourism spending will reach and exceed our pre-pandemic levels in the near future.”

 Greenville-Pitt County Tourism Impact Highlights for 2021:

  • 1,804 people employed in the travel and tourism industry in Pitt County
  • $63.6 million total payroll generated by the tourism industry in Pitt County
  • $10.7 million in state tax revenue generated in Pitt County totaled through state sales and excise taxes, and taxes on personal and corporate income
  • $8.7 million in local taxes were generated from sales and property tax revenue from travel-generated and travel-supported businesses
  • $112.27 saved by Pitt County residents in state/local taxes due to visitor spending
  • 27th  out of North Carolina’s 100 counties in visitor spending

Greenville-Pitt County Tourism Spending by Industry Segment for 2021:

  • Lodging- $50.62 million
  • Food & Beverage- $97.10 million
  • Recreation- $32.33 million
  • Transportation- $55.92 million

These statistics come from the “Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties 2021,” which can be accessed at The study was prepared for Visit North Carolina by Tourism Economics in collaboration with the U.S. Travel Association.

Statewide, visitor spending in 2021 rebounded by 44.9 percent to reach $28.9 billion. Following the devastating pandemic-related losses of the 2020, the total fell just short of the record $29.22 spent in 2019. Direct tourism employment increased 10.5 percent to 197,500.

“These findings are something that everyone in North Carolina can celebrate,” said Visit NC Director Wit Tuttell. “They’re a testament to the resilience of our businesses and our residents, and to the enduring appeal of destinations that include everything a traveler might want. The economic well-being of the state and all its communities rises with the pleasures travelers find in the natural beauty of our public spaces, our culinary traditions and innovation, our remarkable towns and our spirited cities. North Carolina can claim it all.”

Statewide Highlights Include:

  • Total spending by domestic and international visitors in North Carolina reached $28.9 billion in 2021.That sum represents a 44.9 percent increase over 2020 expenditures. The figure falls 1 percent below the record $29.22 billion spent in 2019.
  • Domestic travelers spent a record $28.6 billion in 2021. Spending was up 45.2 percent from $19.7 billion in 2020.
  • International travelers spent $337 million in 2021, up 25.6 percent from the previous year.
  • Visitors to North Carolina generated $3.9 billion in federal, state and local taxes in 2021. The total represents a 29 percent increase from 2020.
  • State tax receipts from visitor spending rose 34 percent to nearly $1.2 billion in 2021.
  • Local tax receipts grew 26 percent to $1.1 billion.
  • Direct tourism employment in North Carolina increased 10.5 percent to 197,500.
  • Direct tourism payroll increased 18.9 percent to $7.7 billion.
  • Visitors spent more than $79 million per day in North Carolina. That spending added $6.4 million per day to state and local tax revenues (about $3.3 million in state taxes and $3.1 million in local taxes).
  • Each North Carolina household saved $580 on average in state and local taxes as a direct result of visitor spending in the state. Savings per capita averaged $222.
  • North Carolina hosted nearly 45 million visitors in 2021.