Guam – The island’s bars and restaurants were a bit busier this weekend as thousands of military personnel participating in Valiant Shield enjoyed their free time.
The air and sea exercise brought more than 18,000 military personnel to Guam from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps
“I’ve just been catching up on some rest and enjoying the atmosphere,” LTJG Nate Whisler told PNC. “So take advantage of what you get when you’re out here.”
PNC found Whisler and and LT Jared Bailey cooling off after a swim in Tumon so far. In addition to snorkeling and swimming the sailors say they’ve also visited tourist sites such as Two Lover’s Point.
Many of the military personnel on island also spent time shopping at the island’s retail outlets.
“We’ve been getting a lot of military personnel coming into the shop,” said Kicks/HI Guam Manager John Melliza. “It’s been bringing a lot of sales. I guess a lot of the military people like shopping for shoes and clothes and what better way to have them in Tumon.”
Department of Labor Economist Gary Hiles told PNC the biennial military exercise has a significant impact on particular business sectors such as bars, restaurants and retail outlets but the total impact on the island’s economy is hard to measure.