Tourism drives a lot of our local economy. Tucsons had a strong tourism rebound since the pandemic. Heres more on how tourism stayed strong and how it could avoid the usual summer slump.

We drive by tourist attractions all the time without maybe considering the degree to which Tucson is a tourism town. Now we are headed into the summer slow spell.

Tucsons natural attractions and great food bring in more than a million tourists a year.

Just in case you were wondering, New York is the biggest source of visitors looking for something different here. Thats according to Visit Tucson, the agency which works to attract tourists.

Tucsons earned an international reputation for fine food. El Minuto Cafe has been part of Tucsons food scene since Teresa Shars family served its first plate there 87 years ago. These days people learn about El Minuto from social media-and theres a ready supply of tourists from the new hotel across the street, who may have their first experience with Sonoran Mexican food.

Teresa Shar says, I explain that a lot because it is different than some food that they’re used to maybe, and I tell them my mother was born in Sonora, Mexico, so we’re an hour from the border. So our food is different than something you might experience in another place back east or something.

At Visit Tucson they say when other areas backed off advertising in the pandemic, strong marketing kept Tucson on travelers minds when they felt ready to get away again.

Tucsons hot summers often make tourism cool down but Visit Tucsons director Felipe Garcia says theyre offering discounts to attract conventions that may have tight budgetsand working to convince people in places like Phoenix that Tucsons a good weekend getaway.

So definitely we’re not letting down. We’re not trying to slow down, we’re trying to actually reinforce that staycation concept with locals in Tucson. Call friends in the family, bring them to town but remember, even though you love them doesn’t mean you have to sleep with them and send them to a hotel. So that way we can get more money in our economy.