Word on the street is a cool, wet June hurt local hotels and resorts — and July is not looking much better.
Blain Sepos, executive director of the Oceanside Tourism Association, said the area’s saving grace is in those visitors who booked into the area well in advance, and the folks who always come back to the mid-Island out of tradition or for family.
“The trend in last-minute travellers is playing a big part,” said Sepos of this year’s tourism outlook.
While April saw area room revenues up 8.2 per cent over the same month in 2010, and May was better than expected, June and July aren’t looking good in current anecdotal comments. However, Sepos added that July to date appears to be on par with revenues in 2010.
“We do get a lot of long-time visitors who always come back,” Sepos continued, “so, that is our saving grace.”
While residents and visitors cross their fingers for sunshine, Sepos said the OTA has bought into a new tourism ad campaign with Tourism Vancouver Island — aimed at those people who make last-minute travel plans.