Economist: Grand Strand poised for tourism boom

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - When the economy turns back around, local leaders claim Myrtle Beach is poised for a tourism boom.

Chad Prosser, director of the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism, says the Grand Strand area is the largest tourism market in the state. It accounts for more than a third of the state's tourism revenue.

While Prosser added that tourism in Myrtle Beach is important for the coastal region and state, he says it's being marketed as a place made for a vacation. Already, their web traffic is up over 100 percent in targeted markets.

Economist Don Schunk adds that once more people start spending money on vacations again, Myrtle Beach is positioning itself to be the place that they spend their money on.

He says with marketing and promotion of the city, as well as investments in the city itself, Myrtle Beach will be at the top of vacationers' lists.

"[There are] 75,000 jobs here because of tourism," Schunk said. "Without those tourists and without that visitor spending, we would not have those 75,000 jobs and our economy would look very different. Most of us would not live in this area without tourism."

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