Seems that the general downturn in the economy has affected SEMA and it’s members as well.
Looking at the front spread, there seems to be less and less cars being displayed in front of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Some companies have decreased the size of their booth, some have even pulled out altogether. It is affecting the general feel around Las Vegas altogether.
SEMA has always provided the locals with a good amount of cashflow. After a brief visit to the local restaurants, casinos and other general hangout places that are frequented by SEMA members, it is clear that there is a large number of people that have decided to stay home this year.
Let’s take P.F. Chang’s for example. A decent quality restaurant, in which previous years we’ve ran into the team from SkyJacker and Hondata. The wait times for tables last year were 40-45 minutes. The year before about an hour to an hour twenty. This year, we were seated in 10 minutes or so.
The casino’s are offering deals 50-70% off in terms of nightly room rates in order to lure in customers. There is vacancy in just about every hotel, whereas last year several hotels were sold out.
Some rumors have been circulating that the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association) show might be re-scheduled to be held every two years.
Who knows. Maybe the new president will change the way the industry is headed and improve things, such as consumer confidence and the economy. We can only hope for the best and cope with the current issues, which are appearing.