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Frequently Asked Questions

About Visit Casper 

We hear a lot that the Casper Area is not a tourism destination. We don’t have beaches, Disneyland, or an iconic landmark in our backyard. So why would someone visit Casper? Is tourism really a “thing” here?

For the last several years, (minus 2020 of course), our community has welcomed nearly 1 million visitors annually. In 2021, we welcomed 1.8 million in overnight visitors who spent 241.7 million, up 27.8% from 2020. That 241.7 million in direct visitor spending powered 2,500 full and part-time jobs, (right here at home!), and $80.4 million in earnings. Tourist spending also contributed $17.1 million in state and local taxes. Each household in Natrona County would have to write a check for $522 to make up the $17.1 million in taxes collected from tourists while they’re here. The cool part is, people visit for several reasons including seeing friends and family, youth sports events and tournaments, meetings and conventions, shopping, traveling to a national park, hunting and fishing, sight-seeing, and more.

Where do our visitors come from?

Our top markets for visitation are Denver, Salt Lake City, Rapid City and Billings. Depending on the time of year, 65-75% of our visitors are from out of state. We also see many of our Wyoming neighbors who come to shop, dine, stay, and play.  

How much do visitors spend while they’re here?

In 2021, we welcomed 1.8 million in overnight visitors who spent 241.7 million, up 27.8% from 2020.

How many people work in the tourism industry in Natrona County?

Tourism puts nearly 2500 people to work in Natrona County every single day.  It’s been a steady employment sector for the last several decades and helps offset losses when the energy industry is down.   

Why do we need to promote the Casper Area? Won’t visitors come anyway?

Tourism is a competitive business. Countries, states, and cities across the globe spend hundreds of millions of dollars to lure visitors to their area because visitors leave what’s called “new” money behind. These are dollars that don’t recirculate from residents. If we don’t market our community, it’s likely visitors would choose somewhere else. Fewer visitors mean fewer jobs, reduced profits for local business owners and fewer tax dollars collected which impacts our quality of life.

How is Visit Casper funded?

Like most convention and visitor bureaus (CVB) in the country, Visit Casper is funded by a lodging tax. Natrona County receives 2% of the statewide lodging tax as well as an additional 2% local lodging tax. This means a 4% assessment is added to every overnight stay in Natrona County to help fund tourism promotion. Visit Casper then reinvests that money in marketing, sales, and PR to continue growing visitation to the area.

Who pays lodging tax?

Lodging tax is paid by people who stay in hotels, campgrounds, RV parks and home shares (Airbnb, VRBO). Residents of Natrona County only pay the lodging tax if they stay in a hotel, campground, RV park or home share property in Natrona County. Organizations like schools, joint powers boards, the state and local governments, etc. do not pay the tax.  

How is lodging tax spent?

Visit Casper uses lodging tax collections to promote Casper to leisure travelers, meetings and sports planners, group tour operators, event promoters and more. We also fund the visitor center inside the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center, offer a hospitality and customer service training program, run Film Casper, facilitate the Visit Casper Business Challenge, etc. Essentially, we reinvest lodging tax collections to drive more visitation to the area. View our budget for the 2021-2022 fiscal year here

Tourism doesn’t affect me or my business. Why should I care?

Tourism touches every person who lives in Natrona County. For example, people who work in the industry then spend their earnings on mortgages, school clothes, the grocery store, etc. Which means the bank, the retailer, and the grocer are all able to pay their employees, too. Service firms, like accounting, attorneys and marketing agencies all benefit from businesses in the hospitality industry that pay for their services. It could be something as simple as your neighbor has a job in the industry. Or, the taxes that are paid by visitor's fund streets, parks, police, fire, etc. There is a true trickle-down effect in the tourism industry which benefits all of us. To learn more, sign up for one of our Tourism Ambassador classes today - Certified Tourism Ambassador > Home (ctanetwork.com)