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Suburbs outside of Austin get economic boost when SXSW is in town

While there are several contributing factors, during March, the City of Buda usually sees about a 20% increase in sales tax.

AUSTIN, Texas — Every year, South by Southwest (SXSW) draws thousands of people to Downtown Austin. 

Any Austinite knows it's best to avoid the area because it can be chaotic with busy roads - indicating that the hotels and restaurants are just as packed.

"We are pacing to be fully committed for the event," said Melissa Farrar with the Fairmont Austin.

And with many Austin hotels filling up during SXSW, people are looking for the next best place. Many end up in the City of Buda, a charming town about 15 miles south of Austin. 

"Since Buda is just south of Austin, they can stay right here ... get a relatively inexpensive hotel ... that would be less expensive than what they would pay in Austin, " said Lauren Middleton-Pratt, City of Buda assistant city manager. "But also get the shopping experience, the new restaurants."

While there are many contributing factors, during the month of March, the City of Buda sees about a 20% increase in sales tax.

Middleton-Pratt said a lot of the time, visitors also come to Buda to experience the Texas Hill Country.

"Passersby's and visitors who are going into Austin, one, it's not as congested," Middleton-Pratt added. 

In addition to having different and new shopping experiences, visitors get to be immersed in the beauty that the Hill Country has to offer with a number of parks, trails and an amphitheater. 

The cities of Bastrop and Cedar Park also experience more people coming in for SXSW. One Bastrop hotel explained that it is fully booked this week, partly because of festival-goers. 

This year, SXSW is expected to be one of the biggest and busiest yet, meaning it could be an even more successful year for Austin's suburbs.

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