Travel and tourism in the Baltimore and Washington areas grew in 1983 at a rate nearly double the national average, according to a report just released by the Washington/Baltimore Regional Association.
Spending for travel in the region increased 9.9 percent to $4.5 billion in 1983, compared with a national growth rate of 5 percent, the association said in a report compiled from U.S. Travel Data Center statistics. The region, which the association calls the Baltimore-Washington Common Market, includes outlying areas of the two major urban centers, such as Frederick, Annapolis and the Chesapeake Bay.
Additionally, spending on travel in each of the five major categories cited by the report -- transportation, lodging, food services, entertainment/recreation and general retail trade/incidentals -- was substantially above the national average, the report says.
Travel spending generated more than 101,000 jobs and a payroll of almost of $1.2 billion in the region, the report says. In Washington, the travel industry contributes about $1 billion in annual revenue and 45,000 jobs, while in Baltimore tourism creates 20,000 jobs with an annual payroll of $224 million and spending of $834 million, according to the study.
The report cited the presence of the federal government, in addition to private business and tourist attractions, as the primary reason for the high growth rate.
J. W. Marriott Jr., president and chief executive officer of Marriott Corp., the country's largest chain of company-operated hotels and a member of the association, said that the combination of government, business and tourism "will continue to make this region one of the leading travel destinations in the world. . . . Many geographic markets have only one travel market from which to draw."