Follows on the Heels of New National Study Revealing ROI of Business Travel


A recent survey of Phoenix hotels has found that the tax impact that visitors have on the City of Phoenix is substantial. Based on a recent survey conducted by the Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB), the results showed that City of Phoenix hotels paid more than $166 million in combined property and sales taxes in 2008.

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon said the contribution of the tourism industry “is important for us all.” He noted, “Tens of thousands of Arizona jobs are directly related to tourism – the majority of them right here in the Valley. But teachers, police officers, fire fighters, utility companies and bankers are no more than One Degree of Separation from the tourism industry. Because tax revenues generated from the industry go toward our schools, public safety, libraries, pools, parks, and streets.

“Whether we know it or not, we all have a direct stake in tourism. It matters how many visitors we get. It matters how many conventions we host. It matters how many meetings are scheduled for Phoenix and the Valley. Whether you work at the airport or at a flower shop 300 miles from the airport, you are one of the Faces of Tourism.”

Greater Phoenix CVB President Steve Moore said the survey the CVB conducted calculated to a gross tax yield per hotel room of more than $6,300. “Hotel property taxes are approximately 27% of this total, or over $45 million. This equates to $1,710 per room, which is eight percent greater than the median Phoenix household property tax, yet a hotel room is much smaller than a house. When one considers that a visitor uses a fraction of the government services provided to residents, this is a great investment for the state, county and city,” Moore said.

“The hotel industry is proud to be one of the state’s largest employers and also one of the largest contributors to city and state tax revenues,” said Arizona Hotel & Lodging Association President/CEO, Debbie Johnson. “Our many hotels and resorts are known for providing visitors and Arizona residents endless dining, golfing and recreational activities, but it’s important that we also recognize the economic impact that our industry has and communicate that when the tourism industry is strong, Arizona residents benefit with lower taxes and more job opportunities.”

Oxford Economic Study Released

The local hotel tax flow survey’s release follows last week’s announcement in Washington DC of a national study conducted by leading global research firm Oxford Economics establishing the clear link between business travel and business growth. For every dollar invested in business travel, businesses experience an average $12.50 in increased revenue and $3.80 in new profits, according to the findings.

In tough economic times, many business executives have an understandable short-run focus on managing costs. “We know that business travel is good for Phoenix’ economy, but this study quantifies the return on investment that businesses experience when they hold meetings, conferences and events here. We’re pleased to have this data that points out the long term benefits of business travel,” said Moore.

The Oxford Economics Business Travel study is sponsored in part by the Destination & Travel Foundation, a combined effort of the U.S. Travel Association and Destination Marketing Association International. The mission of the Destination & Travel Foundation is to enhance the destination marketing and travel professions through research, education, visioning and development of resources and partnerships for those efforts. For more information, visit