Hilton Head businesses preparing for last holiday weekend of the season

Published: Sep. 3, 2021 at 4:38 PM EDT
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HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Labor Day marks the end of the summer tourist season on Hilton Head Island.

We talk about tourist season a lot but the economy here is a mixed bag of local spending and visitor money. When WTOC was talking to businesses Friday, we found some that aren’t really going to be impacted by the end of the tourist season, and some that will see a huge drop in business until it comes around again nine months from now.

“We’re just not that driven by the tourists I would say. Along with the restaurants, a lot of the restaurants have such a following that it doesn’t go blank after the season is over,” said Andrea Sonfield, owner of Expressions Furniture.

Sonfield and her furniture store represent that important piece of the island that’s driven by locals, and while there are plenty of businesses who operate that way, we know tourism dominates the summer season, and fuels the economy.

“I like to call the summer our super bowl because it’s so important for a community like Hilton Head island that we do have a great tourist season,” said Leslie Richardson with Coligny Marketing.

With the conclusion of that tourist season coming on Monday, Leslie crunched the numbers and told me that sales were up 20 percent this summer over last year, so this wasn’t just an uptick over the rest of this year, but it was also a much better season than 2020.

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