Snowbirds are putting money into the Arizona economy from RV parks, Tucson television station KVOA reported.

The most recent scientific study shows winter visitors who live in RV parks bring about $600 million to the state’s economy. It was conducted by Arizona State University in 2003, but Tim Vimmerstedt, with Visit Tucson, believes the numbers are probably comparable today.

Vimmerstedt thinks a lot of that money goes to Tucson instead of the state’s biggest city.

“It’s just not the traffic. And RVs are not easy to get around in Phoenix,” Vimmerstedt said. “So we do see quite a few people choosing Tucson over the Phoenix market.”

Dede Cillito has lived at South Forty RV Ranch on the Northwest Side for eight years, working in the office the past four years. She said fewer than 100 of the 233 lots on the property are occupied year-round.

“Most of them that come here have been coming for years,” Cillito said. “We got a lot of them that they’re semi, they come for 6 months, and then they leave the minute it starts getting hot.”

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