You could experience a sales dip if your business relies on boat traffic.Higher gas prices are rippling through South Florida’s marine community, raising fears that regional spending will contract as boat owners idle their vessels or budget more on fuel.
More than 77,000 boats generate $991 million in annual spending in Broward and Palm Beach counties, according to a 2009 study.
While that’s only 2.6 percent of total retail sales in the two counties, it’s still significant, said Ed Mahoney, the co-director of the Recreational Marine Research Center at Michigan State University.
“Whether people realize it or not, boating is interwoven into South Florida’s economy,” Mahoney said. “When boating activity slows, it affects the bartenders, the grocery store cashiers, the insurance salesman. The dip will circulate throughout the area’s entire economy.”