Many media outlets, Music Times included put undue emphasis on the negative news from EDM festivals, and forget about the huge positive economic effects that the genre's moneymaking machine has on local communities. For example, the Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas cemented its status as the world's largest music festival thanks to 400,000 attendees and the $322.3 million total economic impact that Billboard projected that it brought to the city.
The industry-savvy magazine points to $158 million of that total consisting of attendee spending. Do a little math and that comes out to about $395 per concertgoer, and that's not counting what they paid for their entry fees. Billboard broke down the services that spending was allotted to (all estimates at this point, but well-founded estimates): $52.7 million on food, $29 million on hotel rooms, and $25.6 million on transportation (probably including airfare, but no official word).
And this is Vegas we're talking about, not a music festival tucked away in the woods, so you can bet that the attendees took some time off to check out the sites. Billboard suggests $22.7 million spent gambling at casinos, $15.2 million spent taking in shows and other forms of entertainment, plus $13.7 at other retail locations.
The other 50 percent of that $322.3 million? That comes from the $20.2 million in tax revenue that the city made from aforementioned activities, plus a huge $131.9 million that the extra labor brought in preparing for, working during, and breaking down the festival.
That's why when city's such as Miami threaten to prevent events such as Ultra from returning, it's a safe bet that they're bluffing.