Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2017 8:39 AM | Contributed by Jeff
Orlando-based SeaWorld also reported full-year earnings today. Attendance and revenue dropped in 2016, and the company had a net loss of $12.5 million for the year. A greater percentage of guests visited SeaWorld’s water parks, which cost less to get into. Annual passholder visits to SeaWorld Orlando dropped by double digits the first half of the year. SeaWorld cited weather, a sluggish year for Orlando tourism and competition as reasons its attendance declined 2 percent for 2016 overall.
Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.
It will be interesting to see how continued (and worsening?) soft international tourism is going to hit the Orlando market.
I'm certainly worried, and the "Trump slump" is apparently a real thing in travel. Tourism is an enormous part of our economy, and part of the reason we can get away with low property and sales tax, an no state or local income tax. So far, it doesn't seem like Disney or Universal are taking any big hits, and the recent price increases at least imply some amount of confidence.
Strong US dollar makes for great travel opportunities overseas for Americans. Flip side of that coin is reduced international travel to the US. Double whammy for US tourist locations is you have fewer foreigners visiting at time when more Americans are opting for foreign over domestic locations.
My favorite was a Facebook article about the travel slump that had side-by-side shots, one of Trump and the other of a completely deserted Main Street USA. I thought "I'm goin'!" Then I said "Wait- I was just there...".
It was far from deserted.
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