ORLANDO, Fla. — Even if you never set foot in one of Florida’s major theme parks, you’re still feeling the effects of whatever happens or doesn’t happen at them.
Tim Shevlin is a personal trainer, a busy dad and a devoted husband. But most of all, Tim, like many others, is a Disney fanatic!
Tim is pumped to see the Disney, Universal, Busch Gardens and other Florida theme parks, finding ways to welcome guests back.
Top industry consultants say it’s a welcome jolt to Florida’s economy.
Florida theme parks opening dates:
- Universal Orlando & Islands of Adventure, June 5
- Busch Gardens, Adventure Island, June 11
- SeaWorld Orlando, June 11
- Disney's Magic Kingdom & Animal Kingdom, July 11
- Disney's EPCOT & Hollywood Studios, July 15
“The theme park industry is Florida’s economy because the theme parks are the driver to central Florida, and they allow the dispersion to the other cities in Florida,” said Dennis Speigel with International Them Park Services Inc.
Speigel says the economies of cities like Fort Myers, Tampa, Miami, and Tallahassee get a boost from tourists who find their way beyond the theme parks — to round out what’s typically a one week vacation in Florida.
“The average family spends between five and seven thousand dollars on that trip, so we know that it's hundreds of millions of dollars in a very concentrated period of time” said Speigel.
The theme park consultant we interviewed says the state has lost over a billion dollars in tax revenues since the start of the pandemic.