Arizona tourism dollars flowed in 2014

PHOENIX - More than 40 million people visited Arizona in 2014, including about 8 million visitors to the Grand Canyon and northern Arizona, the Arizona Office of Tourism reported Monday.

Tourism officials said it was a record-breaking year for travel to the state, with an increase of about 4 percent in overnight stays and spending of nearly $21 billion.

The report, based on research by Dean Runyon Associates, showed visitor spending of $563 million in Mohave County and tourism employment of 5,860.

About half of the 40.7 million visitors stayed in the Phoenix area.

The Tourism Office reported 64.8 percent occupancy for Mohave County lodging in the first quarter, an 8 percent increase from the same period a year ago. Average daily room rates increased 8.5 percent to $72.47.

The report attributes about $2.8 billion in local, state and federal taxes to the tourism industry, as well as more than 171,500 jobs.

A separate study released Tuesday said that this year's Super Bowl in Glendale and game-related events pumped more than $719 million into the state's economy.