Hospitality & Tourism


Customer service is one of the most important factors when deciding to do business with a company. In the tourism and hospitality industry, for example, customer service can have a major impact on the industry’s success or failure. As experts suggest, top-notch customer service can truly be a difference maker when choosing one destination over another — and the spending dollars that come with it.

According to VisitPA’s Economic Impact of Travel Report, spending by Pennsylvania travelers and tourists grew to $43.3 billion in 2017 — the eighth consecutive year of growth. Traveler spending accelerated in 2017, growing 4.2 percent from 2016 — a rate of increase that was 2.3 times the 1.8-percent rate of increase in 2016.

Additionally, the report shows:

  • An estimated 204.4 million visitors traveled to and/or within Pennsylvania in 2017, a 2.6-percent increase from the 199.2 million in 2016.
  • Spending by travelers and travel-related businesses generated an estimated $74.7 billion in total economic activity (including indirect and induced impacts) throughout all industries in Pennsylvania in 2017.
  • Travel and tourism-related economic activity supported an estimated 509,100 PA jobs in total (i.e., includes direct, indirect and induced jobs) in 2017 — up 1.2 percent from 2016 and representing 6.6 percent of the state’s total employment.
  • The state’s travel and tourism sector was directly responsible for an estimated $17.9 billion of the state’s 2017 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) — a 5.3-percent increase from 2016. Including indirect and induced impacts, PA’s travel and tourism industry generated $4.5 billion in state and local taxes and $4.8 billion in federal taxes.

And that doesn’t take into consideration the travelers who will also visit neighboring states of New York and Ohio, which are also rich in attractions and travel destinations of their own, with museums, tranquil lakes and bountiful vineyards, as well as the Lake Erie Wine Country Trail and Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

In this edition of the Business Magazine, we’ll showcase some of the exciting places that the tri-state region has to offer, including the Erie Zoo, a 15-acre zoological park in Erie, Pennsylvania that has launched a $10 million capital campaign to take its Wild Open Spaces to the next level.

We’ll also highlight the Chautauqua Institution, one of the country’s premier, nonprofit education centers and summer destinations, located in Chautauqua, New York, and the dynamic programs and events happening there this year.

Plus, don’t miss our informative HR article on whether summer interns should be paid or our new Training Catalog, which offers a number of opportunities to enhance your organization’s marketing and communications skills and employee engagement! To learn more on how the MBA can help you excel in customer service and experience, visit!