The mayors of two resort towns in the province are optimistic about the prospects for the tourist season this year.
Roger Casey, mayor of Shediak, said the mood in the city at the moment could be described as “extremely optimistic.”
“They’re all seeing orders that they’ve never seen before, at least compared to the last two years,” Casey said.
“Shediak will be a busy place as long as Mother Nature can cooperate with us most of the time. I think we are expecting a great tourist season.”
Shift – N.B.11:42Summer tourism
Along the coast of Fundy at St. Andrews, much the same.
“So far, hotel bookings are up compared to last year, and of course we’ve had a pandemic,” said Brad Henderson, mayor of St Andrews.
“But St. Andrews has never really slowed down much during the pandemic. We were very lucky that we had many visitors. [in] 2020 and 2021″.
too much good
During the pandemic, tourism boomed in many parts of the province.
This can be explained by the relatively low incidence of COVID-19 during the Atlantic Bubble lockdown phase, the growing popularity of “rest” and people wanting to get out after two years of lockdown.
But this increase in demand is running into problems with supplies, especially workers and housing for them.
“Our biggest threat as a community right now is going to be human resources, just because of the industry and finding enough people to work with,” Henderson said.
Henderson said the city had grown nearly 15 percent in the past five years, and because the community already had a limited supply of rentals, there were problems accommodating people to work in the tourism industry.
But Henderson said the city is working on a solution.
“We have about 120 units that we are aiming for,” Henderson said.
“It doesn’t seem like much, but there are only 900 houses in the city of St. Andrews. It is a small town. So that kind of growth would be quite significant.”
Problems with inflation
While Henderson expects a lot of guests, he admits the high cost of gas could deter some potential tourists.
He said he’s not bothered by people who come to visit and stay overnight, but there are fears that day-trippers from St. John or Fredericton might decide not to come.
“Because gas costs about twice as much, this is a much bigger commitment for our community,” Henderson said.
While St. Andrews and Shediac are popular tourist hotspots throughout the season, some important events are happening now or imminent.
For St Andrews, the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee has become a one-time tourist attraction in the city.