Borough hotel income up $2.7 million from last year

Good news for those in the local tourist industry - this year's first-quarter hotel room income jumped up almost 2.7 million dollars, compared to last year's numbers.

According to Fairbanks North Star Borough statistics, January, February and March brought in 11.65 million dollars in hotel room revenue this year- that's over a 26 percent increase from last year and almost a 50 percent increase from 2012.

The CEO of Explore Fairbanks, Deb Hickok, says there has been a continued growth in domestic tourism as well as in Asian travelers, particularly from Taiwan and mainland China.
She says there is also an increase in Chinese students based in the US coming to Fairbanks for a spring break destination.

Hickok says Explore Fairbanks has been working to boost the aurora and winter tourism for several years.

"We decided years ago to promote winter tourism and aurora tourism and we have matured that product year after year in terms of the depth and the breath of how we promote it. As we have seen China, not only here, but around the country, China has been an emerging market, so we have focused some efforts in China and that has grown year after year in the last few years."