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NC visitor spending in 2021 up 45% compared to previous year

Recovery in visitor spending was seen in all 100 counties, according to data released Wednesday by the North Carolina Department of Commerce. The study found that visitor spending across the state was up 45% in 2021, marking a strong recovery when compared to 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Dare County ranked 4th overall with $1.8 billion in visitor spending, up 30% over the previous year. Beaufort County had the third largest increase in visitor spending, up 71% from 2020. According to a news release, the preliminary findings reflect the economic impact of tourism on local economies across the state and come from an annual study commissioned by Visit North Carolina.