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Travel Matters in ABQ

The travel and tourism industry's impact reaches far beyond just hotels and restaurants. Visitors to Albuquerque spend their money at shops, rental car companies, on taxis and transportation, on tours and entertainment and more. That outside money is then being circulated throughout our economy, affecting people in all sectors and businesses throughout the city.

Hear from some of our local community members and national industry leaders about how travel matters to them and their businesses. 

Roger Dow
President and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association

“So why does travel matter? Well, we obviously know it matters to Albuquerque because it’s a huge part of business - the second biggest business in the city, and it employs [so many] people and touches so many different areas. But it also matters to the traveler. When people travel, they have better relationships, they build memories with their families. It’s great for education - when children travel they’re more curious.

Travel really matters. It makes a difference in America, and it makes a difference in Albuquerque.

Scott Mitchell
Former Executive Chef, Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

"More tourists coming to Albuquerque means more work for everyone.

In the hotel business you cater to tourists and group business. My job is to make sure they all love the food whether it is for the individuals in the restaurant or a group with hundreds of attendees in a banquet. We have an opportunity to make their experience better by showcasing the unique flavors of our area. An exceptional dining experience will linger in their memory, and they will remember Albuquerque as someplace special and spread the word to their friends."

Jack Sturgeon
Skip Maisel's Wholesale/Retail Indian Jewelry and Crafts

"Tourism and travel have played a large role in the success of Skip Maisel's since the 1930's. Being located on Route 66, tourism and travel is an integral part of our business. We wouldn't be as successful as we are today without the exposure and business that the tourism and travel industry brings to us with visitors from around the world.

Every dollar that’s brought to Albuquerque through tourism helps to support New Mexicans. Without tourism we would be a stagnant economy. We see outside tourism dollars in Albuquerque, and it’s good for our city.

We survive on tourism, it’s what we do. "

Brooke Owen
Former Pilot, Rainbow Ryders

"Tourism allows us to do a job we love, yet support our family as well as being able to show off and promote the great city of Albuquerque."

Jesse Herron
Co-owner Albuquerque Trolley Co.

"ABQ Trolley Co. was started in 2009 to provide a much-needed sightseeing opportunity to visitors. The company was founded on the belief that Albuquerque had a strong tourism industry and that a city tour company was a component of the visitor experience that was desperately missing. The success of our company depends solely on out-of-towners; there would be no 'two guys and a trolley' without tourists. We love them!

For many years now, Albuquerque has recognized that tourism is a major industry. It ranks right up there as one of the top two or three industries in the city. Tourism is important in Albuquerque because it employs people at hotels, it keeps cab drivers busy, it keeps people in the restaurants busy, people at the attractions are working when there are people visiting. So, Albuquerque benefits greatly from people coming in, spending some time here, going out exploring, spending their money. You know, if a person comes and stays in a hotel, they’re not just going to stay in that hotel, they’re going to spend their money in restaurants, they’re going to go out and check out places in the neighborhood, check out local attractions, shop, buy some Lobo gear, visit the University - very important for Albuquerque.”

Roch Hart
Former Owner, New Mexico Jeep Tours

"I got into the Jeep 'eco-tours' because my passion is escaping to the quiet remote places of New Mexico where the history of the ruins speaks of who, what and why they lived there. While listening to the deafening silence you realize New Mexico is one of the best places on earth to be exploring the high desert. Tourism is/should be the number one resource for employment here, which I currently am enjoying.

Tourism is so important for me and my business simply because it’s what I make a living at. But, more than that it’s a passion. My passion is to explore, and I get to take people from all over the country and explore New Mexico.”

Ashlene Miller
Albuquerque School Teacher

“Tourism and travel affect me as a teacher because tourism is always bringing new money into the economy. It is so important to have new money come into the economy because we can build our education system and make it stronger.

Through the travel and tourism dollars that are brought into Albuquerque, we are so fortunate to have so many hands-on learning facilities where we can take our students and help educate them here.”

Don and Travis Leonard
Leonard Tire & Automotive Repair

“Tourism and travel is so important because it allows us to move money around the economy. We have 20 employees; our 20 employees are able to take their dollars that they make and spend them at restaurants and other businesses throughout the city.”

Ed Brown
Taxi Driver, Albuquerque Cab Company

"Without tourism, cab drivers wouldn't be able to make a living. Cabs are a vital part of the Albuquerque community and when travelers come to our great city they support many local businesses because we are able to take them anywhere they want to go! Whether visitors want to go out to dinner, go shopping, visit Old Town, or take a ride on the Tram, a cab provides them on-call transportation. I enjoy showing visitors what our city has to offer. This is my livelihood and tourism in Albuquerque ensures my employer can continue to employ drivers, which means I can continue to provide for my family."

Angela Brown
Waitress, Buca di Beppo

"Tourism drives our company, and drives our business here - 25% of our business is made up of tourists. Tourism to me, means better service. When I meet customers from other cities, I want to "wow" them so they return to our restaurant and our other locations. Tourism makes me realize that I represent Buca di Beppo worldwide, not just Albuquerque."