WASHINGTON (AP) - Tourism officials say Washington saw an increase of about 1 million visitors last year, counting a record 18.9 million tourists visiting the nation's capital.
Statistics released Tuesday by the tourism bureau Destination D.C. show a 5.5 percent increase in total visitors. A study found domestic visitation grew by 4.2 percent from 2011 to reach 16.8 million U.S. visitors.
There was also an increase in international visitors. Officials estimate Washington had 2.1 million international tourists in 2012.
Destination D.C. CEO Elliott Ferguson says tourism officials are encouraged by the growth. He says it translates into a stronger local economy and job market.
Figures show visitor spending increased to an estimated $6.2 billion in 2012. Destination D.C. says more than half of the city's sales tax revenue is generated by visitor spending.