I hate to say it, but if you have not yet booked a hotel on the beach in Outer Banks or Atlantic City for Labor Day weekend, you could probably get a very good deal right now. Both these areas were hit pretty hard by Hurricane Irene, which couldn’t have come at a worse time: one week before one of the year’s busiest beach weekends. So, I decided to write this post – not to encourage “disaster tourism” per se, but to help out these areas which are facing a very grim situation monetarily. Hotel cancellations are flooding in faster than the floods brought by storm surges and high tides as many tourists are deciding to cancel their “last hurrah” trip of the summer and stay home instead.
Yes, there is some significant damage. The beautiful Spring Lake Boardwalk on Jersey Shore was hit very hard – nearly 1.5 miles of it were destroyed. But, the beach areas that are open are fine, and restaurant and store owners are begging people to come visit. Ocean City, New Jersey emerged from Hurricane Irene pretty much unscathed – but most tourists don’t know that. And if you had planned a trip to Nags Head, North Carolina, don’t think about canceling! That entire area is completely fine. However, if you discovered that all of the hotel rooms in the areas were completely booked a couple of weeks ago, check again – some hotels are reporting that 30% of their reservations have been cancelled.
Block Island’s gorgeous beaches in Rhode Island were also completely untouched. The ferries are running, and there is no reason for concern.
Parts of the country were absolutely devastated by this storm, and this is beyond terrible. But, if you’re fortunate enough to have not been affected by the storm and would like one last weekend at the beach, simply call the hotel and ask — chances are the area is fine and you can enjoy one last weekend of summer beach bliss.