AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – It’s an annual cycle: students come, students go. And businesses in Amherst are particularly effected.
Home to UMass and Amherst College, just minutes away from Smith, Hampshire and Mt. Holyoke, students are a big part of what makes them profitable. Amherst has a population of 38,000 people. But UMass alone has 22,000 undergraduates living in and around campus when school is in session.
Russel’s Liquors in downtown Amherst told us they’ve seen about a 10% drop in sales since students left for the semester. But they’re prepared for it.
“With the slowdown in business you definitely have to have less staff on,” Lindsey Matarazzo, the owner of Russel’s Liquors, told 22News. “You plan accordingly. A lot of our students are staff. They are part time so they go away. You cut costs in different ways to make up for the loss of the profit you were making during that time.”
They say people are still buying alcohol for the holidays and won’t see a big drop until after the new year. Soon afterwards, the students will be back. Classes at UMass begin again for the spring semester on January 19th.