421 – The Growth of Bourbon Tourism By The Numbers with Sean Higgins of Mint Julep Tours

You might be wondering if we’ve hit peak bourbon. Bottles are everywhere and people are flocking to Kentucky in droves trying to get a Napa Valley kind of experience. Sean Higgins joins the show once again to talk about the growth of tourism, and he should know. He started Mint Julep Tours back in 2008 after noticing a gap in tourism offerings surrounding the bourbon trail. At the time, Kentucky was not yet booming in tourism like it is today. Fast forward to 2023, and bourbon tourism has exploded, with Kentucky now being a hot spot and destination as it tops the AirBNB travel charts every week. Sean shares how his business has adapted and grown through the bourbon boom, what the pandemic did for tourism in the state. We also touch on the changing demographic of visitors and innovation he sees within the sector.

Show Notes:

  • Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about dusty bourbon
  • What was the background of Mint Julep tours?
  • What state is now the highest for visiting the bourbon trail?
  • Have you seen an increase in bachelor and bachelorette parties?
  • Do you see smaller or larger groups trending?
  • What did COVID do to your business?
  • Are we back to pre-COVID tourism numbers or higher?
  • What’s the demographic of people coming to visit now?
  • Have you established the relationships at distilleries so spots are reserved?
  • What innovation have you noticed in the tourism sector?
  • Have we even hit mainstream yet for bourbon tourism?
  • @mintjulepexperiences
  • Support this podcast on Patreon

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