27.3 million people visited Louisiana in 2013, which is a 3.8 percent increase over 2012A University of New Orleans study says visitors spent $10.8 billion in our state last year. The state brought in $807 million - tax revenues from travel and tourism in 2013.


  • Top 3 - leisure travel activites for Louisiana domestic travelers are:
    1. Visiting friends and relatives
    2. Shopping
    3. Fine dining

Some cities including Lafayette and Rural South continue to increase hotel sales, other areas including Shreveport have experienced a decrease due to lower oil and gas activity.

  • Total visitation increased by nearly 4% during 2013.
  • Visitor spending statewide reached $10.8 billion during 2013, an increase of 1% from 2012 estimates. Visitors who came to the state spent nearly $394 during their trip.
  • An estimated 152,000 direct jobs were attributable to visitor spending in the state of Louisiana during 2013. In the same year, tourism contribution, or direct value added to GDP accounted for about $6.9 billion.
  • By 2017, the number of visitors to Louisiana is projected to reach 28.2 million. During the same year, spending is estimated to be $11.7 billion.
  •  In 2013, total visitation to the New Orleans area was 9.3 million and spending was $6.5 billion. Areas in the Rest of Louisiana, including Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe, Shreveport and Rural Areas of the southern and northern parts of the state received 18.0 million visitors, along with $4.3 billion in spending.


The economy in Shreveport has been relatively stable. Overall jobs have remained at above average levels, but presented a marginal decrease in 2013. Leisure employment was affected by the recession, but has showed signs of recovery during the last two years. In 2013, 2% of additional leisure jobs were added into the economy (Figure 25).


Capacity and passengers at the airport have recovered since the recession. In 2013, airport capacity added nearly 2% of airplane seats, while the number of passengers increased by 1%. Although both figures have recovered significantly, they are still under normal levels. Hotels have been adding capacity continuously at a slower pace. In 2013, hotel capacity increased by 4%. On the contrary, the number of rooms sold has continued to decrease since 2010. Over the last year, this indicator declined by nearly 3%. Similar to Baton Rouge, both statistics should be monitored to reduce the risk of an excess supply in hotel capacity.

Admissions to casinos, state parks, and welcome centers have declined. The big drop in welcome center visits in late 2008 and throughout 2009 occurred after the Greenwood center was temporarily closed. With casino, state park and welcome center activity reducing continuously, the increase in hotel and airport statistics could be attributed to activity related to the film industry and nearby natural gas production.


In 2013, total visitation to the city was nearly 9.3 million and represented an increase of 3% from 2012. By 2016, visitation to New Orleans is estimated to reach approximately 9.7 million visitors; that is an increase of approximately 4% or 373,000 people from current visitation estimates.