Memorial Day weekend expected to bring high tourism numbers to PCB

Published: May. 18, 2022 at 8:15 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Panama City Beach is home to many tourist-friendly businesses.

These businesses are looking forward to what the summer months will bring as the Memorial Day weekend approaches.

“That’s what helps us sustain over the winter,” ZooWorld director Kayte Hogan said.

Hogan said the money from the summer season allows the zoo to invest in more things.

“We’re hoping that our numbers match last year which will give us more room to make some more improvements, get in new animals, and always do the little things to keep a zoo running,” Hogan said.

Tourism officials are also hoping for a busy summer.

“Memorial Day weekend is always one of our strongest holidays,” said Jayna Leach, the Vice President of Marking for Visit Panama City Beach. “Many times we do sell out because it is kicking off the summer season.”

Leach said this year’s tourism numbers aren’t expected to be as strong as last year’s.

“We do anticipate that the numbers would be down a little bit in May just because last year was a record-breaking year and our numbers last year were up 90 percent,” Leach said.

Visit Panama City Beach reported the area brought in more than $3 billion in total visitor spending from 2020 - 2021.

However, Leach said this year’s spring break numbers are worth noting.

“So the numbers so far this year are looking really positive and very strong,” Leach said. “For March, spring travel was really the busiest it’s ever been. We just got in our March tax numbers and we were up 15.6 percent over last year.”

Leach also said being loyal to current customers and attracting new crowds will only help the city grow.

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