TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - On Wednesday, the University of Arizona’s announced there will not be a week-long spring break next year to minimize the spread of COVID-19 from travelers.
The famous spring break destination for Arizona students, Rocky Point, said the university’s decision will have an economic impact on them, but believe it’ll be beneficial not having as many students on the beach.
“I see it as something positive. Instead of having all those students here in one-week congregating, they’ll all come on different dates and have more space to enjoy themselves safely,” said Hector Vazquez del Mercado, President of Puerto Peñasco Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
According to the agency, Rocky Point sees over 120 million students in a lapse of five weeks.
“Yeah sure, it will slightly impact our economy. But it’s also just five days, from one school. We also have students from ASU, Grand Canyon, families that come with their kids,” Vazquez added.
By spending an average of $56 a day, Vazquez said Arizona students contribute $6 million to their economy during spring break . He said even though most visitors come from U of A, causing the city to lose millions- having fewer people to worry about during the pandemic is helpful.
“We used to have 10 palm-thatched roofs on the beach where people can relax and hang out. Now we only have 5 and they’re spread out. We’re trying our best to maintain social distancing,” Vazquez said.
In the midst of trying to keep everyone safe, Vazquez said the buses transporting personnel around Rocky Point must stay at or below 50% capacity, slowing things down for everyone.
“As a tourist area we have to look out for the population that lives here, our employees and of course visitors,” he said.
Officials said they’ve seen a positive outcome since the reopening of the beach in August and encourage those wishing to still visit the area to do so, during less busy times.