The term sports tourism refers to visitors who will travel to a location for the purpose of participating in or watching a sports event. The 2017 State of the Industry Report published by the National Association of Sports Commissions in collaboration with Ohio University cites direct visitor spending associated with (non-professional) sports events and tourism was calculated to be $11.4 billion.
According to the 2016 State of the Industry Report by NASC, direct visitor spending in the United States related to sports tourism increased by 26%. The 2017 Report cited visitor spending increased again by 9%. Termed ‘recession proof’, sports tourism has remained constant, and in some cases increased, while ‘general’ tourism has traditionally declined during economic downturns.
Sports tourism benefits communities through a direct economic impact:
As well as indirectly: