Fears about terrorism are having little impact on the volume of reservations for this winter at central Florida RV parks, according to the Tampa Tribune newspaper.
Even the volume of reservations from Canadians, which was down earlier this year, has picked up, according to the RV park operators who were interviewed by the Tribune.
“Some of my six-monthers have arrived and, by the next two weeks, there will be a ton of those,” said Martha Harkless of the Clearwater Travel Resort, an RV park in Pinellas County.
“Even with my Canadian residents, I haven’t had any cancellations,” Harkless added.
Because the Canadian dollar is relatively weak, currently worth about 65 cents in U.S. currency, there was concern earlier this year that the amount of Canadian snowbirds visiting Florida RV parks would be down. But it appears Canadians have adjusted to the difference in exchange rates, according to those interviewed by the Tribune.
Concerning fear about terrorism, Joe Striska, president and CEO of the Florida Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds, said he has not seen a wave of cancellations due to fears about terrorist attacks.
“People are feeling comfortable on the road in their own vehicles,” Striska said. “RVers are a hardy bunch, and they’re going to do their own thing anyway. They can just as well hear about terrorism in Florida as in Michigan, Ohio or New York.”
Thus, the outlook for Florida campground operators appears relatively bright, particularly when compared with Florida hotel, motel and theme park operators, who have experienced a sharp fall-off in business since Sept. 11, particularly among those who normally fly to Florida for their vacations, according to the Tribune.