DESTIN, Fla. (WMBB) — As Okaloosa County was flooded with tourists this Memorial Day weekend, so were the area’s main tourist attractions, including Crab Island and Harborwalk Village.
The influx of foot traffic was a relief to local business owners.
As the first weekend with vacation rentals taking reservations since the Coronavirus shutdown, local business owners look to this weekend as a promising predictor for the summer months.
“Business, since we got back, since we opened about 10 days ago, I’m just going to say, we’re not complaining,” Harborwalk Village business owner Yaron Hazan said. “Business was good, this weekend was very, very good compared to last year, we compared numbers, much better than last year.”
Hazan said that it was a pleasant surprise to see an approximately 25% increase in business compared with last year’s Memorial Day weekend.
Harborwalk Village marketing director Brittany Byrd said that they usually see a packed Memorial Day weekend, and while this weekend drew large crowds, they were expecting larger ones. This could possibly be because people are still getting used to dining out again, she added.
Business owners are also predicting that the summer tourist season will continue into October because of it’s late start.