Spring Break Information
Over half a million students from colleges and universities all across the United States and Canada come to Panama City Beach for Spring Break. They came because they were welcomed and appreciated by the people who live here year round. They came because the money was right and the more than 18,000 available rooms didn't cost them the next semester's tuition. They came for the 27 miles of sugary, have-to-wear-sunglasses sand, it's clear 72-degree warm and inviting water, and it's average year-round air temperature of 78 degrees. They came because it's the place to leave all the worries of academia behind in the blowing snow and ivy-covered towers. So come on down and check out spending Spring Break on Panama City Beach. Your friends have already made their reservations, so why don't you? After all, more than 1.5 million college students have been coming here since 1992. Plan your trip now!
Things To Remember
Florida's Legal Drinking Age - The legal drinking age in Florida is 21 years of age. Be aware, Panama City Beach utilizes police officers that "walk a beat" along the roadside, for high traffic areas of Panama City Beach.
Florida's Open Container Law - Open containers of alcoholic beverages are not allowed within vehicles in the state of Florida. But wait, there's more to this law: Open containers of alcoholic beverages are not allowed within 50 feet of a public thoroughfare. This means not only can you not have open containers while driving (or your passengers or within the driver's reach), you can't walk along the side of a road with an open container.
1. Florida State Law requires that YOU MUST BE 21 TO PURCHASE, CONSUME OR POSSESS alcoholic beverages. Open alcoholic containers on public property, including streets, sidewalks, or inside a vehicle is prohibited. A person of legal age cannot sell or provide alcoholic beverages to any person under age.
2. Do not drink and drive. Appoint a designated driver, or pay for a taxi, but DO NOT drink and drive.
3. It is against the law to take ANY glass container on the beach.
4. TAMPERING WITH ANY FIRE SAFETY DEVICE IS A FELONY under Florida Statutes and will result in eviction from your accommodations, arrest and prosecution.
5. Occupancy of guest rooms is strictly limited to the number of persons designated by the Management in accordance with local fire codes. Violators will be subject to possible forfeiture of paid monies and eviction.
6. No open fires of any type are permitted on the beach.
7. Please dispose of any litter or trash in the receptacles provided.
Balcony Climbing is against the law in Florida - Occasionally Spring Breaker's feel that they just have to climb out or hang over hotel balconies. THIS IS REALLY DANGEROUS! Several deaths have resulted from balcony climbing over the past several years and you wouldn't want this to happen to you. So please, pay attention, it's punishable by law with a fine or jail time.
The Boyz in Blue, Black, Green and Brown - In general the Beach Police, Panama City P.D., Sheriff's Department and State Troopers are nice men and women. Dedicated to keeping the peace, upholding the law, and keeping you safe during Spring Break. They are not here to wreck your fun or give you a hard time. It is a good idea to make sure to respect them for the job they do and to obey them at anytime it is necessary. If the previous 2 statements are followed then your stay should be a safe and enjoyable one.
Bring your insurance information - Hundreds of students get injured every Spring Break from slips and falls, injuries from renting a Moped or whatever. Make sure you have your insurance card or at least, if you're under 21, have you parents make out and sign a consent form giving someone 21 years or older the permission to authorize medical procedures in your parents behalf.
"In the unlikely event...." - During your visit no one ever wants to get sick or hurt. Sometimes these things will happen and you need the aid of a small clinic, not a full hospital. In such cases there are two such facilities here on the beach to assist you. Crest Walk-In Clinic and Bay Walk-In Clinic. They can deal with most non-emergency cases. Though it isn't necessary at either clinic to have an appointment, calls in advance to avoid long waits are greatly appreciated. But if it is after 8:00pm or the illness is serious, please consult a physician. Our major hospitals are located on the other side of the bridge within 30 minutes drive away.
The sun is strong in this part of the U.S. - During spring break you'll notice a lot of people burnt to crisp on their first day. Let me tell you, looking like a lobster isn't such a good idea. The sun is almost at triple its intensity on the beach and near the water. Due to the reflections they give off. Getting red as a lobster on your first day not only can give you sun poisoning, but it can also make the rest of your visit really miserable. Follow some simple guidelines to make your tan not so harmful.
Tan in short intervals - This helps keep you from getting burned and also helps promote a more even, healthy, and non-peeling tan. Trying to tan in one day is just not smart. Not only can you receive sun poisoning, it can also make your visit a miserable one.
Wear sun-block as often as possible - Any time you're going to be in the sun, wear sun-block. This keeps you from getting burned and protects you from harmful UV rays. Also make sure to get those tender areas. Such as your nose, ears, neck, face and back portion of your body. Remember the higher the SPF rating the better you're protected. Also make sure to re-apply often.
Wear protective gear - Such as sunglasses, hats, sun-block, shirts over swim suits, socks and shoes. Do this right after tanning or if you're just walking around outside for the day.
Don't use products that speed up tanning - These are unnecessary and couldpromote burning if you're not careful.
Don't fall asleep in the sun - If you fall asleep in the sun you're going to be a crispy critter if it's longer than 20 minutes without sun-block. Try to stay alert while tanning not only for your own safety, but for the safety of your friends as well. Following these guidelines will help protect you from the Sun.
Bring your ID - Make sure to bring your ID. Each year, thousands of Spring Breaker's end up forgetting their ID. Even though you must be 21 to drink, all of the clubs check ID's. Most of the clubs will let you in if you're at least 18 but they tag or stamp persons 18 - 20 who can't drink and use a different tag or stamp for persons 21+.
Directions to Panama City Beach - Check out Maps.Yahoo.com for an interactive map that will also provide driving directions.
Read the Damage/Security agreement where you're staying - Almost all of the hotel, motel or condo properties on Panama City Beach require some type of damage/security deposit for person's under 25 years of age that are registering for rooms. Call the place you're staying and ask them to send you a copy of their agreement in advance. Knowing the information before hand (while you've got time to look over it) may keep you from being EVICTED from your hotel, motel or condo. Lodging properties typically have policies against: loud or noisy behavior or music, fighting, underage drinking, balcony climbing, unregistered persons, and much more.
Bring some warm clothes too! - Although Spring weather on Panama City Beach usually ranges from the lower 70's to the lower 80's, at some times, especially when a cold front blows down form the North, you may find a couple of days that you wish that you'd brought a sweat shirt and some long pants with you. The weather is usually quite nice, but when you find conditions as described above, you'll probably find out that it's cold as h*ll at home, so you're better of here than at home!
S. A. F. E. T. Y. - With a final word and most important one. During your stay remember to stay safe. Act just as cautious as you would at home. Don't drink and drive. Control the amount you drink in one day, don't risk alcohol poisoning, it can befatal. Don't climb on balconies or other elevated surfaces that you may fall off of and cause yourself injury or worse. On that note don't commit any foolish acts that may cause you harm. No one in Panama City Beach wants to call your family and give them bad news about your injury or death.