Tourism in the Louisiana is big business. In fact tourism is one of the main focuses of the office the Lieutenant Governor, Billy Nungesser. Nungesser reported to the media yesterday that travelers from outside the United States are planning and making more trips to Louisiana than ever before.

Statistics show that the volume of international travelers to our state is up by over 36% over the past year. The only state in the union that has seen a bigger growth in international visitors during that time is Michigan.

Nungesser told the Louisiana Radio Network that while domestic tourism to Louisiana is important. The international visitor brings some very lucrative benefits to our state's economy.

The international visitor stays longer, spends more money, and has a tendency to see more of Louisiana, not just one city.

As you might suspect New Orleans has seen a major jump in international tourism over the past year. The city has experienced a 37% increase in that kind of traveler. Obviously the cities international airport and worldwide reputation make visiting the Big Easy and easy choice for those arriving from overseas.

While New Orleans might be a visitor's first impression of our state. The international tourist is also venturing out of that city and into the unique cultures our state is famous for.

Our people treat people like family when they come from all over the world, and I hear so many incredible stories about the special little things that our people do in the hospitality industry.

Nungesser suggested in his comments that food is also a big reason that travelers want to experience all of Louisiana. He also added that if our state wants to continue to see growth in international tourism the formula is quite simple.

Keep our Louisiana highways and communities clean, keep them in good shape, and keep adding new attractions to our state.