Alliah Sheta/Monterey County CVB


Visitation in Monterey County increased by 22%

New Data on Impact of the Tourism Industry in Monterey County


Monterey County, Calif. (April 23, 2015)-The Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau (MCCVB) released new data on the impact of tourism in Monterey County. The study conducted by Dean Runyan demonstrates significant increases in travel spending, visitation and tourism related employment among other indicators and further reinforces signs of tourism growth by other sources.   


Dean Runyan, the foremost company in tourism research and analytics (also used by Visit California), showed overnight visitation increased from 3.5M in 2013 to 4.3M in 2014 – an increase of 22%. These results are consistent with occupancy trends seen in the Smith Travel Research data.  In 2014, occupancy rates increased to 67.8% which is 4% higher than in 2013.


Travel spending in Monterey County in 2014 was $2.6 billion. This represents a 4.4% increase from 2013.


“These numbers aren’t surprising to us - business hasn’t slowed down in Big Sur. We usually see a decline in visitation in the winter months but that never happened this year,” says Rick Aldinger, General Manager of the Big Sur River Inn.


Employment increased for the fourth consecutive year following the recession. Employment has increased by 5.1% per year since 2011.  “Tourism is the number one industry on the Monterey Peninsula, and the second largest industry in Monterey County. We’re excited to see the results from this study and will continue to work to make sure we grow jobs and opportunities for a flourishing tourism economy,” says Tammy Blount, President & CEO of the MCCVB.


Local and state travel-generated tax receipts increased by 6.4% and 4.1%, respectively.  This is good news for the jurisdictions of Monterey County as most rely on Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) and sales taxes to support their general fund expenditures. In fact, TOT is on the rise as well. In 2013-2014, TOT increased by 10% county-wide, and as of mid-year (July – December 2014), TOT has increased by 9.18% year over year.


We are grateful to our visitors who contribute so much to our local economy, from hospitality jobs for our citizens to financial support for our library, recreation centers and neighborhoods,” said City of Monterey Assistant City Manager Hans Uslar. “We want to thank the MCCVB team for their vital role in this success.”


To find the full Dean Runyan 2014 report, please visit:




Monterey County is located 120 miles/192 km south of San Francisco and 345 miles/552 km north of Los Angeles along the classic California corridor. The region boasts 99 miles of prime Pacific Coastline, the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, three historic missions, 40,000 acres of premium vineyards, more than 40 tasting rooms, 26 golf courses and over 250 lodging properties. Monterey County includes the Monterey Peninsula, Big Sur, North County and the Salinas Valley. The Monterey Regional Airport (MRY), just three miles from historic downtown Monterey and minutes from the area’s major attractions, is served by non-stop flights to and from Las Vegas (LAS), Phoenix (PHX), Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN) and San Francisco (SFO).