Fireworks & Fortunes: $2.1B+ spending spree fuels local economies this July 4th

Published on July 03, 2024

July 4th fuels local economies to the tune of $2.1B+

Get ready for fireworks and fat wallets! Across the United States, event-based spending is predicted to soar to over $2.1 billion during the first seven days of July, fueled by patriotic celebrations and major festivals. This translates into a significant boost for local economies across three key industries:

  • Accommodation: $540M is expected to be spent on hotels and other lodging options.

  • Restaurants: Over $1.1B will likely flow into local restaurants, bars, cafes, and eateries.

  • Transportation: Nearly $424M is projected to be spent on ground-based transportation like car rentals, taxis, and ride-sharing services.

Let's dive into the top cities poised to experience this spending surge and explore how local businesses can capitalize on the event tourism boom.

The travel surge is already in motion

Two of the biggest acronyms in travel – TSA and AAA – are sounding the alarm: This year's July 4th holiday week is expected to be busier than ever. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) anticipates screening over 32 million passengers at US airports from June 27 through July 8, marking a 5.4% increase over last year's Independence Day period. Similarly, the American Automobile Association (AAA) projects that 70.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home, with over 85% traveling by car. 

Cities prepare for event tourism influx

Major public holidays like July 4th have become a goldmine for local businesses thanks to the surge in event tourism, a strategic approach where cities leverage celebrations and festivals to attract visitors and boost local economies. This year promises a particularly lucrative holiday period. Several cities across the nation are gearing up for a remarkable influx of visitors and event-based spending, translating directly to ringing registers, overflowing tables and increased foot traffic.

Here's a glimpse into how some cities are driving event tourism this July 4th:

  • New Orleans, LA: The Essence Festival, a cultural celebration of Black excellence with high-octane music performances and inspiring talks about gender, race, culture, and art, is gearing up to draw 500,000 attendees and generate over $42.7M in spending. Hotels near the festival grounds and shops selling culturally relevant merchandise need to be prepared for this influx.

  • Washington, DC: The nation's capital will see a combined $70 million in event-driven spending during the first week of July, thanks to The Smithsonian Folklife Festival. This international exhibition of living cultural heritage is predicted to attract 1 million attendees. Lodging near the National Mall and businesses offering tours or cultural experiences will likely see an increase in bookings due to this event.

  • Boston, MA: Brace for a staggering $209M+ in event-driven spending during the first seven days of July. The Boston Harborfest, featuring historical reenactments and live entertainment, is expected to draw 2 million attendees, while the iconic Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular will attract another 400,000. Restaurants near the waterfront can expect a surge in business, while hotels can consider special packages for event attendees. 

As millions of Americans hit the road and take to the skies this 4th of July, local businesses and economies stand to benefit from the surge in tourism and spending. From Boston's historic festivities to New Orleans' cultural celebrations, the impact of these events is both large and far-reaching. 

Leverage PredictHQ to identify key events and maximize profits year-round

The 4th of July holiday is just one example of an event that drives demand for local hotels, restaurants, transportation, and other industries. PredictHQ provides real-time event data to help businesses like yours identify 19 categories of upcoming events throughout the year, across the globe. This insight empowers your whole team to plan your staffing, promotions, and inventory to capitalize on these busy periods and maximize your profits. Sign up for your PredictHQ account today to start tracking impactful events today!