Article

Bling, Bling! Good News For Surfers

| posted on July 22, 2010

Okay, we get it! The economy sucks. Shut up already. The good news is that we are surfers. What we do, riding waves, is free. I’ve got some more economic good news for you. Surfing is cheap. Dirt cheap. Cheap entertainment and inexpensive hobbies do well in sour economic times.

Just imagine if we were golfers or snowboarders. If your passion involved fees or tickets or gasoline, well, the economics of fun is no fun. Those industries must really be hurting. But as surfers we are blessed with a free resource–waves. Imagine if every time you paddled out it cost you $100. Which, by the way, is the cost to surf three hours on the Bruticus Maximus wave machine at Wavehouse. If you surfed five days a week, it would cost you $500/week or $2000/month. So, according to my economics, by living your life as a passionate, enthusiastic surfer you are saving yourself $24,000 each year.

Now, the economic downturn may be affecting some of the surf industry, but my guess is that although the surf industry is taking a bit of a hit, we are relatively hidden from the economic downturn.

Surfers here in SoCal only really need two things: a board and a wetsuit. The rest of the ancillary fluff doesn’t mix into the equation. You can pick up a good used board for $300 ($500 new) and a new wetsuit for around $300. Keeping a keen eye on Craigslist or other classifieds and you’ll be in business for about $600. And you know what, you deserve a new board and wetsuit. After all, according to my P&L your still up more than $23,000. Hell, you can probably afford a NEW board!

On top of that, as your new economic advisor, I’m suggesting a surf trip for you this year. The old adage “buy low, sell high” has never been truer. Go the Mentawais or Central America or Europe and go soon. Your odds of getting uncrowded surf have never been better. Most are retreating into the global news media’s self perpetuating den of economic doom. Not you and me. We’re buying!

The waves in far off regions have never been less crowded as the masses would rather sit at home and watch their 401Ks turn into 201Ks. It’s going to happen either way. Might as well make the most of it with a surf trip. I’ve often pontificated about regional geo-political turmoil as being good news for traveling surfers. Show me a coup or an earthquake or a terrorist action and I’ll show you uncrowded surf spots. The same is true of global economic unrest.

So there you have it. Economic good news. Use it wisely.