Montana’s summer travel season ends again on high note

The passing of Labor Day marks an end to the summer travel season in Montana, and preliminary figures released this week suggest that it was another banner year for the state’s tourism industry.

Survey results from the University of Montana’s Institute of Tourism and Recreation Research show a 6 percent year-over-year increase in the number of nonresident travelers visiting the state in the first two quarters of 2012, and hotel occupancy in Montana – perhaps the most effective measuring stick of a tourist season’s robustness – outperformed the national average in both June and July. In July alone, Montana topped all 50 states with 84 percent hotel room occupancy.

By TRISTAN SCOTT of the Missoulian

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