Montanans Worried That Tourism Overcrowding is Hurting Quality of Life
Tourism is vital to nearly any state and Montana is no different. People come from all walks of life to visit attractions across the state, e.g. Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks. It's caused quite a worry across the state, however; a University of Montana study is finding that there is a real worry about tourists coming to stay. Here are the details.
Does tourism impact our Quality of Life?
According to this study from the University of Montana, 56% of the residents asked by the Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research (ITRR) said that tourism is causing the state to become overcrowded. It is the first time ever that the ITRR has received a majority percentage in this yearly survey. Interestingly, nearly 85% of our own Yellowstone Country residents surveyed believed that to be the case.
However, the majority of those surveyed also stated that the benefits of tourism in Montana outweigh the negatives and an overwhelming 83% agreed or strongly agreed that the economy benefits from tourism as well. So, it seems that tourism is good, but it's also not so good in other ways. At least, according to the population surveyed.
As it turns out, there may not be many tourists this year
Gas prices are insanely high, as Michael Foth pointed out in his article here. You can't go anywhere in town anymore and see gas prices below $3.50 per gallon, and it's only going to get worse throughout the year. Don't expect there to be a ton of people willing to pay nearly double as much for a round trip of gas than it cost last year.
So, that's my take. It definitely interesting, but tourism is necessary for the success of our economy in my opinion. So, perhaps we should fix this whole gas price issue before we start to worry about changing tourism.