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Texas Ranked As Top Summer Destination

The latest report from WalletHub identifies Texas as the seventh most fun state in the country
All photography by Cori Baker

Despite high inflation, a new report says 85% of Americans will set out on a vacation this summer and Texas may be the ideal destination.

According to a report from the website WalletHub, Texas may be a top destination for summer travellers due to its high number of attractions per capita.

WalletHub recently released the report: 2023’s Most Fun States in America. The study compares 50 states across 26 key metrics, which range from movie costs to accessibility of national parks to nightlife options per capita.

“On the one hand, high inflation should have a big impact on discretionary household spending, which would include travel and tourism. On the other hand, the high prices for airfare and other tourism-related items seem to be a result, in part, of pent-up demand from reduced travel during the pandemic,” said Samuel Stone, associate professor at California State University, Fullerton.

According to the report, Texas is the seventh most fun state in the country and ranked in the following categories:

  • 1st – Restaurants per capita
  • 1st – Movie theaters per capita
  • 1st – Amusement parks per capita
  • 3rd – Fitness centers per capita
  • 12th – Performing arts theaters per capita
  • 17th – Golf courses and country clubs per capita

For the study, researchers at WalletHub examine the states in two key categories: entertainment and recreation, and nightlife.

Along with the number of different attractions per capita. Researchers also looked at the weather, shoreline mileage, beach quality, the number of state fairs and events, the price of beer and wine and the average time of last call.

The study identified the top ten most fun states to be: California, Florida, Nevada, New York, Illinois, Colorado, Texas, Washington, Minnesota and Louisiana. The states that ranked the worst are Delaware, West Virginia and Mississippi.

“There is definitely a segmented travel market. Travel by households at lower income levels may be affected a lot by inflation while higher income households may not be affected very much,” added Stone.

Data used to create this ranking were collected from the following entities:

  • U.S. Census Bureau
  • U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis
  • National Park Service
  • Council for Community and Economic Research
  • American Gaming Association
  • TripAdvisor, Beachapedia
  • America's Scenic Byways
  • NOAA Office for Coastal Management
  • Music Festival Wizard
  • Discotech
  • WalletHub research

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