LUBBOCK, Texas–As families and friends are making their way to Lubbock to celebrate their graduates, they’re bringing their money to spend with them right here in Hub City.

John Osborne, CEO, of Lubbock Economic Development Alliance (LEDA), said there are 7,000 hotel rooms total in Lubbock and during graduation weekend will fill a bulk if not all of those rooms.

Osborne said it’s not just hospitality other businesses are benefiting from the busy weekend of visitors.

“We see that there’s a lot of economic activity that takes place in a variety of different forms,” Osborne said. ”Whether it be a visitor bringing more outside dollars in or the fact that you’ve got a lot of locals here, that their son or daughter are graduating as well, you see that there’s just a lot of extra spending going on and that really helps generate more economic activity in our community.”

President of the Lubbock Hotel and Tourism Association, Tiffany Walker, said she has seen it year after year working in the industry that this is their busiest weekend.

“They visit stores around town, they go out to eat and then obviously in the hotel industry where they stay and the Airbnbs, you’re bringing in that revenue tremendously this weekend, more so than a normal average weekend,” Walker said.

Walker said they know what to expect for this weekend, but with South Plains College and Texas Tech’s graduation mixed with Mother’s Day weekend, she said be prepared for packed restaurants.

“The restaurants that we’re going to have a harder time this year being hit with those reservation graduation reservations the Mother’s Day right back to back on Sunday,” Walker said.

Osborne said although they can not track the total amount of revenue brought in, they can see a significant boom for businesses in the area. 

“It is a happy time and when you have happy times, people tend to want to spend a little bit more money,” Osborne said. “We see that all these visitors are bringing their wallets with them and they’re spending the night at hotels, they’re spending their money at restaurants, and we go buy gifts and home goods…all that extra spending that takes place this weekend is really impacting our economy and helping to bring more outside money into it.”

Walker said due to hotels being at full capacity in Lubbock around Graduation, last-minute visitors have to stay in nearby towns like Plainview and Levelland, which also benefit.

Osborne said more locals each year are also renting out rooms in their homes to get in on the money brought in. 

Texas Tech Graduations will be held Friday and Saturday at the United Supermarkets Arena. SPC will hold its graduation at its Levelland campus on Friday.

Both Walker and Osborne said to be prepared for heavier traffic and longer wait times this weekend.

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