Tourism in Topeka sees uptick after year plagued with pandemic

Local News

TOPEKA (KSNT) – Visit Topeka shared numbers showing a large uptick in Topeka tourism in June and July despite COVID-19 cases rising across the area.

The travel industry took a large hit in 2020 and Topeka was no different. The travel and tourism industry saw its lowest-income since the early 2000s, but a strong summer may be a sign of things to come.

“June and July were really good, and August is Trending very well,” said Sean Dixon, president of Visit Topeka. “These all speak well for an industry that has suffered throughout the pandemic more than most, so that is encouraging”.

Hotels in Topeka brought in $4,622,575 in room revenue for the month of June, which is almost double the revenue June saw in 2020. July showed improvements as well with a record-breaking $4,932,329 which is 48.6% more than the income from last July.

The ADR, or average daily rate, of all the hotel rooms, was over $90 for June and July due to the high demand for hotel rooms. This is nearly a $20 increase from January when the ADR sat at just $69.65.

  • Occupancy rate is up 17.6%
  • Demand of hotel rooms is up 28.5%
  • Overall revenue is up 37.2%

This uptick is linked to more outdoor events like Country Stampede and Thunder Over the Heartland being held and drawing large numbers due to the lack of events previously caused by the pandemic.

Dixon hopes that numbers across the board will return to pre-pandemic levels by 2023, but because of the success seen this summer, he is hopeful the return could come sooner than that.

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