They clog up the roads, restaurants, doctor’s offices, movie theaters and just about every other spot around town from November to April. And during “season,” we grumble and groan about the crowds and commotion.
But in the interest of optimism and peaceful coexistence, I’ve compiled a few reasons why snowbirds aren’t all so bad after all.
So the next time you’re stuck waiting in line, remember these four reasons why we should learn to love our visitors from the north:
1. They support local businesses.
From the family-owned surf shop to the cafe on the corner, there are many local businesses that make most of their money during the winter. While us locals might stay away during snowbird season, all that foot traffic from northerners allows our favorite businesses to stay open year round. (So we can enjoy our summer meals and activities in peace!)
2. They pay to play.
Between sales tax from the goods and services they pay for, airfare and transportation taxes to the property taxes on their winter homes, snowbirds (and tourists) contribute towards the state’s overall tax burden. When I’m waiting 45 minutes for a table at my favorite restaurant, I like to repeat “no state income tax” over and over in my head – it helps soften the anger caused by my rapidly dropping blood sugar levels.
3. They’re family.
I have relatives up north – and I know a lot of you do, too. So when they come to visit — whether it’s for a week or a month — they’re not just regular old snowbirds, they’re family. I try to remember that not every visitor is an invasive species; many folks are just down here trying to spend time with their loved ones in the sun.
4. They LOVE our town.
We’re not so different, are we? We all love Jupiter and the surrounding areas – the scenery, the weather, the way of life. I know how lucky I am to live where other people dream of vacationing. I don’t blame them for wanting to come here and experience paradise.
This winter, try to stay positive; after all, snowbirds and tourists are an inevitable part of life in South Florida. If all else fails, just remember – April will be here before you know it.