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About the Department

In 2018, Tennessee saw 119 million domestic visitors in 2018, up 5.1 percent from 113 million the previous year and hit a record-high $22 billion in domestic and international travel spending. Tourism generated over $50 million in new state and local tax dollars in 2018, approximately $25 million of which supports public education.

Travel in Tennessee generated 189,757 jobs and $1.81 billion in state and local tax revenue. In 2018, Tennessee ranked number 3, after Pennsylvania and Colorado, for international spending growth over 2017, according to Tourism Economics. International spending growth in Tennessee is 7 times the national average.

The department's marketing activities promote Tennessee to vacationers in the United States as well as internationally.  

The department also operates 16 Welcome Centers along the interstate highway system in Tennessee. Each of the Welcome Centers is equipped with a toll-free telephone system allowing travelers to make hotel, motel, and campground reservations anywhere in Tennessee, as well as free Wi-Fi.

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development is to motivate travel to and within Tennessee by inspiring enjoyment, creating memories, producing a desire to return, and establishing key long-term relationships that result in visitors becoming residents.