Local businesses fear new travel advisory could impact tourism

Posted at 9:36 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 23:09:30-04

SOUTHWEST, Fla. — As three U.S. states now require travelers from Florida to quarantine due to high cases of coronavirus, businesses prepare to feel the impact of fewer visitors and patrons.

On Wednesday, New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a joint travel advisory for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

“We worked really hard to get the viral transmission rate down, and we don't want to see it go up because a lot of people come into this region and they could literally bring the infection with them," Cuomo says.

Travelers from nine states, including Florida, will be required to quarantine for 14 days.

The new restrictions are now causing some local businesses to consider what this could mean for their bottom line - especially during this time of year.

"Obviously, it's a crisis going on in the world, and to be taken seriously. But, when some of our busiest months are taken it's tough for the small businesses.”

James May is the general manager of the Sea Gypsy Inn on Fort Myers Beach, and says the recent uptick in coronavirus cases in Florida wasn't exactly a shock for him.

“It's of course a concern, but not a surprise anytime you reopen in something like this, there is going to be a rise in cases.”

Julio Figueredo of Felipe's Mexicana Taqueria on Fort Myers Beach says keeping customer's safe is the restaurant's first priority.

"Of course, we're going to follow what the experts say. We’re not in the medical field we’re here to feed people," he tells FOX 4.

James May agrees.

"We are going to do everything we can to uphold the mandate. If the business suffers, business suffers. But, people come first."

The travel advisory goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday.