TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — Face it – we live in paradise. From our beaches and shopping to theme parks and attractions around the state, Florida can be a lot of fun and a lot of people are coming here to take advantage of it.
According to Visit Florida, the state’s official marketing arm, the state’s tourism is booming with 23.4 million visitors coming to the state in the second quarter of 2013. That was a 2.6 percent increase in visitors over the same period in 2012.
“We’re up nearly two million visitors who increased their spending by more than $1.7 billion,” said Tammy Gustafson, Chair of the Visit Florida’s Board of Directors.
Officials say that the second quarter of 2012 — April to June — is the largest second quarter for tourist visits in the state’s history.
“Florida just experienced its largest second quarter visitation ever, combined with a record first quarter, the Sunshine State is now on pace to generate an unprecedented number of jobs and economic opportunities for Florida’s families,” said Gov. Rick Scott in a statement.
Through the first half of 2013, Florida welcomed 49.6 million visitors — for an increase of 4.2 percent.
And there’s more good news: visitor spending in Florida for January-May 2013 was $33.2 billion, representing a year-over-year increase of 5.5 percent from the same period in 2012.
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