Tourism impacts South Dakota in 2023

PIERRE, S.D.(DRGNews)- A newly released analysis of visitor spending in every county in South Dakota in 2023 shows a 21% increase from 2019– pre-pandemic– and a 4.9% increase from 2022 numbers.

Travel South Dakota Deputy Secretary Wanda Goodman says the county level data is a followup to the analysis of the state as a whole that they release in January.

Goodman says the Missouri River region led all regions in growth compared to 2019 spending levels, with visitor spending growing by 24%, exceeding the prior year’s visitor spending by $11.2 million.

Hughes County experienced the most visitor spending activity in the Missouri River region, reaching $97 million and making up 25% of the region’s total.

Minnehaha County and Pennington County make up the largest share of visitor spending in South Dakota, which Goodman says has led to impressive annual spending in their respective regions.

Visitor spending in South Dakota reached a record high of $4.96 billion in 2023– a 4.9% increase over 2022. Goodman says Travel South Dakota wants to build on that momentum in 2024.

In 2023, the tourism industry supported 57,835 jobs in South Dakota, which generated $2.2 billion in income for those families and $384 million in state and local tax revenue.

To see the full 2023 Tourism Economics report or the county analysis report, visit