Document Type



Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research

Publication Date



Social and Behavioral Sciences


This report is a summary of Montana residents’ perceptions concerning visitors’ behavior prior to and during the summer of the 2020 pandemic. Data were collected from October 1st to November 7th of 2020. As a result of the pandemic, the number of people participating in outdoor recreation in certain parts of the country has increased significantly, with surrounding national parks like Yellowstone and Glacier experiencing record visitation counts throughout the summer and fall. The pandemic has dramatically changed travel and tourism patterns in the state, with visitors flocking to Montana to enjoy the wide expanse of recreational opportunities. Anecdotal evidence from tourism partners suggested that visitors to the state were different this year, and residents appeared less enthusiastic about them being in Montana. This study was conducted to determine if residents’ perceptions about visitors’ behaviors have changed when comparing the summer of 2020 to years past.


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