California tourism is back, with activity in Oxnard advancing job creation and spending at local businesses

New statewide report from Visit California finds tourism experiencing growth in Oxnard and across the state. Additionally, California’s new brand positions the state as the Ultimate Playground.

Local tourism spending in Ventura County hit $1.867 billion in 2023, while statewide, travel spending saw a full recovery from the impacts of the pandemic, according to new economic impact research released today by Visit California.

Visit California’s annual report measuring the economic impact of tourism showed that travel spending in Ventura County supported 16.8k local jobs. Tourism also provided $72 million in local tax revenues to support essential services and programs in the community.

“Tourism is a pillar of the local economy, not only lifting up local businesses and creating jobs, but making Oxnard a more dynamic place to live and work,” said Julie Mino Buffo, President & CEO of Visit Oxnard. “We are delighted to welcome visitors to experience our rich culture and history, pristine beaches and harbors, and diverse culinary offerings, and in doing so, help enrich the quality of life for all residents.”

California’s tourism economy produced $150.4 billion in travel spending last year, surpassing the record $144.9 billion spent in 2019. The Economic Impact of Travel in California, prepared by Dean Runyan Associates, detailed spending that is 5.5% higher than 2019 and 3.2% higher than 2022. The $12.7 billion in state and local taxes generated by visitors in 2023 marked a 3% increase over 2019. Taxes generated by travel in 2023 saved Californians $966 per household.

News of travel spending’s recovery comes as Visit California launched The Ultimate Playground, its first new brand platform in more than a decade. Grounded in research from the National Institute for Play that traveling is a proven benefit to one’s physical and mental well-being, the new brand asserts that California’s playful lifestyle, paired with its abundance of experiences, create the ultimate playground. The first spot under the brand platform, can be found here. Take a short quiz to find your play style.