Duluth tourism stronger than expected in August, September

Tax revenues show the Duluth tourism industry did better than expected in August and September, continuing an upward trend.

For January through September, the city’s tourism tax collections were up 42% from the same period in 2020. So far in 2021, the tax has brought in $9,309,474, which is 35% more than projected.

The City of Duluth says tourism tax collections for food and beverage were 37% higher than projected in August and 42% higher in September. Taxes collected by hotels and motels were about 48% above projections in August and more than 50% above in September.

The 2.25% food and beverage tax is collected by establishments with $100,000 or more in annual sales. All lodging establishments must collect a 3% tax and those with more than 30 units also collect an additional 2.5% tax.

These taxes are in addition to state, county, and city sales taxes that total 8.875%.

Money raised by the tourism tax is used for tourism marketing, support for tourism-related improvements and activities, and facilities including the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center and Spirit Mountain.