eTraveler - November 1, 2023

November 1, 2023

Tourism Makes $10.4B Economic Impact in 2022

We are pleased to share the 2022 Economic Impact Report of tourism in Iowa. In 2022, direct visitor spending of $6.9 billion generated an overall economic impact of $10.4 billion in Iowa, including 68,607 jobs and and more than $1.1 billion in state and local tax revenue. The Iowa Tourism Office will dig in to these numbers in detail on our November 16 webinar. County level data is expected to be available the week of November 13. Read the full statewide report here.

Gov. Reynolds Announces $6.5 Million for Destination Iowa

Governor Reynolds announced a new $6.5 million investment in communities to bolster tourism and quality of life through Destination Iowa. The grant initiative, which launched in 2022 with federal funding, became a state-funded initiative following approval from the Iowa legislature this year. The program will follow a two-step application process. Pre-applications will be accepted on a rolling basis now through January 31, 2024 via IEDA’s website. For those applicants invited to apply for the full application, the final application deadline is March 1, 2024.


See Iowa From a New Perspective

We are excited to share a sneak peek of the Soul of Iowa 2.0 campaign, coming in spring 2024. The incredible drone video from the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad showcases first-of-its-kind video footage captured with cutting-edge technology. This video, along with several others, will be featured in advertising campaigns over the coming year. Watch the sneak peek here.

2024 Arrivalist Program Now Available

The Iowa Tourism Office is again partnering with Arrivalist to provide partners exclusive access to the State Visitation Dashboard with county and city level visitation data from January 2021 through December 2024. The dashboard allows you to segment visitation by month or day/weekend and provides insights on origin markets, length of stay and more.

The 2024 program provides 24/7 access to the dashboard on a sliding scale of investment:
  • $2,500 (marketing budgets under $500,000/year)
  • $5,000 (marketing budgets between $500,000-$2,000,000/year)
  • $10,000 (marketing budgets over $2,000,000/year)
If you are interested in purchasing access to the Arrivalist dashboard in 2024, please complete the sign up form. There is no limit to the number of partners that can sign up, but sign-ups after December 15, 2023, will not be accepted. If you have questions, please contact Matthew Kodis (

Upcoming: Iowa Tourism Office Update

Mark your calendar for the next Iowa Tourism Office Update, which will be held on November 16, 2023, at 2 p.m. We will discuss the county-level and statewide tourism economic impact report, Arrivalist visitation numbers, Soul of Iowa marketing plans and more.


Host a Tourism Insider Meeting

In 2023, the Iowa Tourism Office launched Tourism Insider Meetings. These meetings provide opportunities for industry partners from across the state to gather, collaborate, share ideas and network.

We would again like to invite partner communities, businesses or organizations to express interest to be one of the five hosts for these meetings, which are a great opportunity to show off your visitor assets and success stories to tourism industry partners from around the state. We encourage partnering with others in your area to co-host. Please note if you have already hosted a Tourism Insider Meeting, you cannot host again during this cycle.

The Tourism Insider Meetings will be held in each of our five travel areas during the following months. The next Tourism Insider meeting is in Decorah on February 27-28, 2024.


New in '24 Virtual unFAM Update

The virtual media event will take place on Tuesday, November 14, with media participants including Midwest Living, U.S. News and World Report and the Des Moines Register; freelancers for Parents, Yahoo!, Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler; plus travel influencers from Iowa, Nebraska and Wisconsin. Each participant will receive a box of items related to the New in ’24 events, attractions and lodging properties to open during the event.

Upcoming Meetings

  • November 2, 2023 - CITR Travel Iowa Marketplace, Indianola
  • November 9, 2023 - iTip Webinar: Utilizing Shrpa to Enhance the Work of Your Organization, virtual
  • November 16, 2023 - Iowa Tourism Office Update, virtual
  • December 6, 2023 - iTIP Webinar: Tourism Round Table Discussion, virtual
Check out the calendar of events for more details and upcoming meetings.