The Economy and U.P. Tourism, Part 3

We’re only a few days away from Memorial Day weekend.

For many, this weekend marks the beginning of summer and the travel season.

We won’t know the full effects of the country’s economic struggles on domestic tourism until later this year.

But several U.P. businesses are already getting some favorable numbers.

ABC 10’s Mike Stark has more in the final part of his series, ‘The Economy and U.P. Tourism’.

Most U.P. businesses that rely on travelers won’t see a big influx of customers for a few weeks.

But summer travelers have been making calls and reservations for the past few months.

That means many places have an idea how the season will begin.

Some destinations, like the Tourist Park Campground in Munising, have seen a nearly 20% increase in reservations.

But the economy still worries many other U.P. businesses — especially when you consider that many who usually travel haven’t decided yet how much they’re willing to spend on a vacation.

About 38 million Americans haven’t decided yet if they’ll take a trip this summer.

Many of them are waiting to see if they can find the right deal.

This also means that websites like Travelocity and Orbitz, which feature hotel deals and discounts, will get a lot of traffic.

It’s both good and bad news for hotels.

Lyn Durant of the Cedar Motor Inn in Marquette Township and Nola McConaha of Negaune Township’s Quartz Mountain Inn both say while the discounts mean less revenue for them than they might otherwise see from their rooms, they could also mean they’re seeing rooms get rented that would otherwise be empty.

So, the Upper Peninsula and other parts of the country that rely on tourism dollars are very much in wait-and-see mode.

But many factors we’ve explored over the past few says could mean the U.P. may have less to worry about than the rest of the country.

Pat Black of the Marquette Country Convention & Visitors Bureau says many around the country look at the U.P. as a preferred destination for outdoor fun.