Q: Can the Hospitality Industry Help the US Economy? How?

A: The hospitality industry can absolutely help all kinds of industries. The hospitality industry stimulates the job market as it is intrinsically tied with food service, commerce, tourism/recreation, and transportation. It is important all these areas work together to offer a competitive destination for leisure, business, travel, etc.

In 2012, hotels across the Unites States had an average 61.3% occupancy and generated more than $1.3 trillion dollars in 2010.  Although the hospitality & travel industry yields impressive numbers, the influence generated by hotels is hundreds of billions of dollars greater. Therefore, if the rates are attractive and accommodations pleasant, more tourism dollars are spent – creating a positive influence on the local and even national economy.

A good example is Dubai; initially considered very unimportant small city in the desert, city officials understood that something had to be done to generate income in the long term. How did they do that? They created tourist attractions where there were none, and created a strong and glamorous capacity to host visitors. In doing this, Dubai created hundreds of thousands of jobs for construction through completion.

The hospitality industry influences the perception of the visitor about the hospitality of the country and attracts new investments.Often times this is neglected because the effect is not immediate – money invested into tourism will take a while to create a return but it will surely come if the strategy is right. For the USA to continue to flourish as a worldwide destination, the hospitality industry must take care to ensure authenticity and service.