St. Patrick's Day Boosts Businesses, Hurts Others - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

St. Patrick's Day Boosts Businesses, Hurts Others

SAVANNAH, GA -

Hundreds of thousands of visitors are already starting to pour into our fair city to enjoy the big holiday weekend.

And for businesses in the tourism and hospitality industry, Saint Patrick's Day weekend means big money---or so you would think.

With as many people that are expected, the truth is, the last thing many of them want to do is see the sights.

It's a painful reality that the carriage tour companies have been wrestling with for years now.

So instead of trying to fight the crowds for business, some have decided it would be better to take a loss and not open at all.

"Business starts picking up for us this time of year."

But Daniel sparks with Carriage Tours of Savannah says it's all about to come to a screeching halt in just a few days.

"This year, I don't think it would even be possible for us to do tours, with the zone expanding. We wouldn't even be able to get down here to our base or operations. We wouldn't be able to get the horses to and from the barn. This year, we can't even give it a shot if we wanted to."

Not that they do---as Saint Patrick's Day celebrations continue to grow, Sparks says they have learned a few things over the years.

"People who have been drinking--- and horses--- don't mix very well in general. So we try to keep them separated as much as possible. Saint Patrick's Day means we stay at the barn."

Not opening at all. Sparks says it's easier to count the day as a loss...

"We don't typically try to open for business on Saint Patrick's Day, or the day of the parade, because people that are in town that day are really not looking for a carriage tour. You know, they don't want to come here and spend twenty dollars for a carriage tour; they would rather go spend twenty dollars on two or three drinks at the bar. Those are the kind of people that are here for the holiday."

So they will give it a go the following week.

"The week after Saint Patrick's Day will start picking back up again. Spring is always a nice time in Savannah."

Believe it or not, Sparks says it's better for business when Saint Patrick's Day falls on a weekend, because the festivities usually take place Saturday and Sunday only.

When the holiday falls on a weekday, he says partygoers tend to spread out throughout the week, limiting business even more.

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