Thank you for your interest in the Nebraska Passport!
The deadline to apply for the 2019 Nebraska Passport has passed. The application for the 2020 Nebraska Passport will be available September 1st, 2019 – December 31, 2019.
Becoming a Passport Stop
- Passport stops are chosen through an application process.
- Any Nebraska destination is welcome to apply. Passport stops need to offer an personable, wonderful, unique visitor experience. Past stops have included museums, restaurants, outdoor adventures, retail stores, etc. See list of past Passport stops.
- There is no charge to be a Nebraska Passport stop. This program is funded through the Nebraska Tourism Commission, whose mission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry.
Passport Stop Benefits
Being a Passport stop is not only an enjoyable experience, the Passport can help your destination reach your goals. For example, past Passport stops reported the program helped them achieve:
- Significant increases in traffic – Typically between 1,000-3,500 visitors, depending on type of destination and location
- Significant increases in sales or donations – Varies based on type of destination and location
- Significant increases in awareness among multiple target audiences
Additional benefits stops reported include:
- Passport visitors helped market my destination to their family and friends
- Passport visitors have already returned to my destination
- Received local or statewide publicity opportunities (newspaper, radio, TV)
- Increased number of social media followers and/or website views
- Other local tourism destinations, dining establishments, gas stations/convenience stores, retail stores, and event organizers reported that Passport traffic positively impacted them
- Collected participant contact information in order to market upcoming exhibits, events, etc.
- Built new partnerships with local businesses; worked with local businesses not on the Passport to promote each other
- Built new partnerships with organizations or groups in order to promote my destination
Passport Stop Requirements
The most important requirements for Nebraska Passport stops are:
- Offer an exceptional, unique visitor experience.
- Display excellent customer service. Be available at all times to greet Passport visitors and stamp Passport booklets.
- Be open regular, reasonable, consistent hours (including at least one weekend day) during the Nebraska Passport season (May 1 to September 30). Note: Hours of operation are very important. Preference is given to destinations that have hours that are convenient for travelers.
- Keep the same hours of operation throughout the Passport season. Chosen Passport stops submit their hours in February and Passport booklets are printed in March.
- Abide by Nebraska state law that prohibits charging participants for admission in order to receive a stamp. Many tourists will naturally invest money in things they wish to see, buy, eat, or experience, but our state laws prevent us from forcing Passport participants to pay for something at each stop.
- Be a good tourism ambassador for your region. Talk to travelers about other tourism destinations, restaurants, retail stores, etc. in your area that they may be interested in visiting.
About Designing the Passport
Each year the Nebraska Passport is created with an emphasis on:
- Destination variety
- Geographical diversity
If you have been a Passport stop in previous years, thank you! Due to the popularity of the program and in the interest of keeping the Passport fresh for repeat travelers, we typically wait at least 4 years before repeating stops. Thank you for your understanding.
About the Application Process
- There is no fee to apply for, or participate in, the Nebraska Passport Program.
- Typically over 200 applications are received for 70 Passport stops. Thus, if your business isn’t chosen one year, please consider applying again the next year.
- Stop categories (such as Quirky Nebraska, Rural Gems, Family Fun, Happy Hour, etc) are not chosen until after stop applications have been received.