McAllen is set once again to welcome the thousands of Winter Texans back to the Valley.
“We always look forward to the time of year when our Winter Texans return,” said Nancy Millar, the McAllen Chamber of Commerce’s Vice President and Director of the Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The Rio Grande Valley has 500 RV parks, where about half of the Winter Texans stay for up to 6 months. The remainder, Millar said, rent apartments, have second homes or stay in extended-stay hotels.
“Most of our Winter Texans come from the Midwest, all across Canada, and Northern Texas,” Millar said.
South Texas usually benefits to the tune of $802 million per year from winter visitors.
“Retirees who are ‘sampling’ the McAllen area for the first time will be pleasantly surprised by McAllen’s cost of living,” Millar said. “They will be able to stay here longer than they could have in Florida or Arizona, for instance, because their money will go further.”
One of the major benefits of Winter Texans, besides the obvious economic ones, is the difference they make to the locals’ quality of life. “Our Winter Texans are very interested in volunteer opportunities, so through their work in the schools, orphanages, hospitals, Chambers of Commerce and with other organizations, we all benefit,” Millar explained.