TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WSAV) – The sun may still be shining on Tybee Island, but each week, fewer people are starting to make their way out to the beach and into local businesses.
“Yeah as soon as school started back it seemed to go down and quiet off a lot. It’s still busy kind of on weekends, our night times are a little busy. I don’t really see major decline until it gets like really cold, and then it gets really quiet,” said Julie Harris, Shift Leader at Coco’s Sunset Grill.
Many restaurants on the island aren’t quite sure how to plan for this year’s offseason. Due to COVID-19 cancelling summer plans for many last year, tourists decided to postpone their trips to Tybee until the fall and winter months. Causing many restaurants to generously profit in a time where in years past, some have had to close their doors.
“This year, as far as offseason on Tybee, we’re facing an unknown because last year we were much busier than usual. Then we had been in several years, decades, probably all over the island due to people flooding in because of COVID,” said Belinda McLain, General Manager of Gerald’s Pig and Shrimp.
Many businesses on the islands are also facing challenges with the supply chain and staffing issues left over from the pandemic. Two issues business across the country are facing, but for Gerald’s Pig and Shrimp, it has now limited them to only opening three days a week.
“Have to say number one is staffing, we have only been able to be open three days a week all year because we can’t get staff. And products, the supply chain dilemma is ever-changing. One week we can get this, the next week we can’t, the next week it’s something else,” explained McLain.