National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW), recognized annually in the U.S. on the first full week of May, is a time to celebrate the value travel holds for our economy, businesses and personal well-being. This year, there is more reason than ever to celebrate the collective strength of the U.S. travel and tourism industry and its dynamic workforce.

The 38th annual NTTW, taking place May 2-8, recognizes the Power of Travel and the critical role the industry plays in bringing back our vibrant community, restoring the economy and rebuilding our workforce.

In Columbus, the power of tourism is undeniable. Annually, Greater Columbus welcomes 43 million visitors who directly spend $7.6 billion at local businesses. Bed tax collections gathered through overnight stays generate $49.7 billion and benefit not only Experience Columbus and the Greater Columbus Sports Commission, but also these organizations:

Bed Tax in Columbus benefits the affordable housing trust, 30+ Human Services, Greater Columbus Arts Council and the Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority.

One of the other incredibly important facets of the tourism economy is that it supports nearly 78,600 jobs, or one in every 12 jobs, in Columbus and Franklin County. That enough to fill more than all of these venues combined:

Nationwide Arena, Mapfre stadium, Schottenstein Center, Huntington Park

While the last year has been tough on the travel economy, as detailed in our recent annual report, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The number of vaccinated individuals is on the rise, mask mandates are becoming less strict and this summer, is the summer to live.

As the next iteration of the Live Forward campaign that supported the Columbus community through COVID-19, Experience Columbus is kicking off the summer to live by offering curated itineraries and ongoing activations throughout the city to inspire residents and visitors alike to explore the city.

Itineraries, which can be explored in depth here, highlight all the great things there are to see, do and experience in Ohio’s capital, with options including:

Live for the Scene

A blueprint for unwinding in Ohio’s capital city, with everything from live music venues to dive bars.

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Live for the First Bite

Mouthwatering tips for rediscovering (or finding for the first time) the city’s most unique and unexpected eateries.

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Live to Slay

A nod to Columbus’ fashion-forward atmosphere and the best places to score hard-to-find pieces.

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Live for the Thrill

Perfect for adrenaline junkies and packed with experiences like skydiving, ziplining, hot air balloon riding and more.

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Live to Shine

Celebrating the city’s distinct communities with a curated list of the top spots run by women, Black, LGBTQ (and other!) diverse business owners.

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Live to Inspire

Showcasing Columbus’ artistic side, from museums to public exhibitions like large-scale murals and quirky outdoor installations.

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Live Like a Proud Local

Now, as the city begins to open back up, these jobs are once again available and local businesses have plenty of opportunities for those interested in a career in tourism. More than just the chance to support your community, tourism offers flexible hours and seemingly endless opportunities for advancement. Learn more about a career in tourism and explore current openings here, or check out other ways to get involved: 


Become a Columbus Insider

This program is a local certification program that aligns the community. This training will equip you to answer frequently asked visitor questions and provide great service.

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Volunteer with Columbus

Search for entertaining, leisure volunteer opportunities in Columbus all in one place! It's one-stop shopping for you and your friends to engage in the fun events and activities that...

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