For the first time in the history of the International SPA Association (ISPA), the total number of visits to U.S. spas rose to over 180 million in 2016. ISPA released it's annual spa industry financial findings this week, reporting that the number of spa visits is estimated to have increased nearly 2.5 percent during the year, from approximately 179 million to 184 million visitors from 2015 to 2016.
"We are thrilled to see our industry's hard work and dedication truly pay off with more and more consumers enjoying spas," says ISPA president Lynne McNees. "An increase in visits means higher demand of spa services, which demonstrates a very positive outlook. As jobs are created to meet this demand, we will continue to promote the benefits of a career in the spa industry."
The ISPA Foundation partnered with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to conduct the study, which surveyed what's known as the Big Five: total revenue, spa visits, spa locations, revenue per visit, and number of employees for the U.S. spa industry.
"The ISPA U.S. Spa Industry Study reflects a pleasing picture of steady growth in the industry," says Colin McIlheney, global research director for PwC. "The key metrics are all continuing their upward trend and the numbers in employment highlight the importance of the spa industry to the US economy."
The rise in visits drove the total revenue to surpass its previously record-setting mark in 2016, increasing from $16.3 billion in 2015 to $16.8 billion, a 3.1 percent increase. There was growth in the total number of locations throughout the country, increasing from 21,020 in 2015 to 21,260 in 2016, a 1.1 percent increase.
There was a modest increase in the overall number of employees, increasing from 359,300 in 2016 to 365,200 in May of 2017. Currently, there are 32,930 vacant positions for service providers in the spa industry.
"According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are still seven million people unemployed throughout the country," McNees said. "Promotion of careers in the spa industry will be an important initiative for ISPA moving forward."
American Spa recently met with McNees and ISPA chairman Todd Shaw at the ISPA Media Event here in New York City. Check out what they had to say in our Facebook Live video below: