The Alaska Travel Industry Association received a financial shot in the arm recently, from a U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant. Using CARES Act funding, the EDA awarded the Association this $2.8 million tourism grant to spur travel and tourism in Alaska. This follows over a year of limited travel in the United States and internationally because of the coronavirus pandemic.
But if you look at the numbers of travelers now boarding airplanes, loading up the SUV for a road trip and filling reservations for campgrounds, inns and AirBnBs, it’s clear that people are ready for a vacation. It’s been a long 16 months of pandemic fears, pandemic precautions and pandemic restrictions. Everyone appears poised to let loose this summer for some rest and relaxation that happens outside of their living rooms. And grants are available across the U.S. to help the tourism industry.
Out of all industries, the COVID-19 pandemic hit the tourism industry especially hard. Federal and state relief programs helped. But the industry now faces bringing back furloughed workers and filling open positions in the midst of a nationwide hiring crunch. And this is happening just as people are hitting the road or planning their summer vacations.
So this $2.85 million grant to the Alaska Travel Industry Association came right in time. According to Alaska U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan:
“One of the best ways we can rebuild our struggling tourism sector and support hard-working Alaskans in the industry is to get the word out that Alaska is ready to host Americans for a vacation in our state.” — Senator Dan Sullivan
Tourism Grant Awarded to Help Spur Travel in Alaska
This EDA grant aims to help bring people from the lower 48 states to visit the most northern region in the U.S. This is despite the fact that cruise ships will not be trawling Alaskan waters for the second straight summer. Naturally, this is a fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. But the rest of the tourism and travel industry is primed to move.
Alaska ranks high as a potential destination among travelers, and possible visitors are reaching out. Summer fun in Alaska includes the Slam and Slam’n Derby. Also, the annual salmon fishing competition in Anchorage in early June. The Forest Fair and Bear Paw festivals follow in July. But in addition to big city fun, travelers come to Alaska to view its natural and often icy splendor. So kayaking, canoeing and hiking destinations will be popular this year.
GrantWatch Lists 100s of Grants for Travel and Tourism
Whether it’s pandemic-related or general and ongoing support, GrantWatch has grants open specifically for tourism. And, we also have a range of grants available to Alaska residents, nonprofits and small businesses. Visit GrantWatch.com to see what grants are available for your state. And consider a GrantWatch subscription to unlock extra features, including our keyword search.