June 20, 2024


sights and trips

Why are hotels, Airbnbs so highly-priced in Myrtle Beach, SC?

Lodge costs in Myrtle Beach have skyrocketed this summer time, significantly surpassing their lows for 2020 and even earning pre-pandemic rates search like a inexpensive deal.

For substantially of July, the ordinary day-to-day charge for a hotel area in the Grand Strand — $235-$260 — is any place from 15% to 30% larger than 2019, before the pandemic, and up to 70% increased than 2020, in accordance to details from the Myrtle Seashore Area Chamber of Commerce and Coastal Carolina University.

The increased price of lodge rooms in Myrtle Beach front when compared to earlier years strikes at 1 of the region’s most appealing characteristics for vacationers — affordability.

The regular every day amount for a resort home the 7 days ending in July 24 was $257, 67% better than 2020 and 29% greater than 2019. The substantial costs arrive as Myrtle Seashore lodge occupancy has stayed near 85% — just brief of what tourism leaders generally contemplate to be “full occupancy” — for considerably of June and July.

“The days of rock-base charges are long gone,” Myrtle Seashore Hospitality Association CEO Stephen Greene claimed. “Everything in relation to vacation is greater than it was when we had been going by way of the pandemic, and I imagine it has to be. That was so small that we were being obtaining a challenging time, you know, maintaining the doorways open up.”

Holiday vacation rentals, like Airbnb, in Myrtle Beach front are extra expensive than resorts appropriate now: averaging $336 for each evening for the 7 days of July 18-24, according to the chamber. But dwelling rentals, on average, have a few occasions as many bedrooms as resorts, in accordance to CCU’s knowledge.

The price of non-lodge holiday rentals has stayed considerably static compared to 2020, when costs went up sharply in the area as Airbnbs and other rentals attained acceptance simply because people sought to stay clear of hotel crowds all through the pandemic. Similar details for 2019 is not available.

What is driving up lodge charges?

Greene reported the superior cost of lodges ideal now is another symptom of inflation across the American economic system.

A single of the most important elements driving the rate improves in Myrtle Seaside has been the mounting cost of labor.

Hospitality enterprises for months have struggled to seek the services of — and maintain on to — sufficient workers to hold their organizations functioning. Restaurants have had to go away tables vacant, numerous accommodations have only rented out 80-90% of their rooms, and shops and services businesses have had to cut down their hours or times open to protect against personnel burnout.

That wrestle to obtain plenty of labor has led companies to provide better and greater wages or indicator-on bonuses in the hope of attracting new staff and acquiring them to keep. The charge of these wages is then passed onto buyers in the sort of costlier stays.

Not only has labor amplified the foundation price of managing a lodge, but some places have experienced to offer with offer difficulties as perfectly.

Myrtle Seaside Town Council member Jackie Hatley, who owns the Sea Dip Motel & Condos, mentioned she’s struggled to locate more than enough towels and linens for her rooms. Not only is there a lack of the linens themselves, but she said her cleaning provider has had to cost much more because the price tag of cleaning materials has gone up as effectively. Ideal now, she only has about 85-90% of her rooms readily available on weekends due to the fact she’s continue to brief a number of housekeeping, routine maintenance and front desk staff.

“The demand from customers is pretty substantial, but we do not have our full source online,” stated Greene, of the Hospitality Affiliation. “When you go to your preferred restaurant, you’re going to see strains wrapped all around the setting up, but you are (also) going to see sections that are however blocked off mainly because we do not have staffing.”

Hatley mentioned the difficulties she’s dealing with are field-vast, and she does not consider they will degree out right up until subsequent year. As for labor shortage challenges, Hatley that’s a much more existential dilemma that won’t be solved at any time before long.

“In the next two to a few decades, the hospitality sector as a total, nationally, is likely to have a challenge with remaining in a position to recruit,” Hatley mentioned. “We’ve been viewing it arrive, but it’s really below now, and we’re heading to have to get inventive. … What the response is to that, I’m not exactly sure.”

Doug OFlaherty, the vice president of operations for the S.C. Cafe and Lodging Affiliation, stated lodge rates have been taking pictures up throughout the point out and are not always exceptional to Myrtle Beach front.

Looking beyond labor and provide complications, OFlaherty stated the pent-up desire to journey immediately after additional than a yr of pandemic lockdowns has driven up prices. Some motels, he reported, may well also be charging larger premiums to recoup past year’s losses, but most of the costs are likely towards masking those people elevated foundation costs.

Nonetheless, OFlaherty stated he was still shocked to see how substantially hotels have been charging in recent weeks. He echoed a sentiment becoming expressed by several tourism gurus: Few envisioned getaway travel to appear again as speedily or intensely as it has this spring and summer season.

“I am taking a long weekend myself and heading out of city, and I was flabbergasted at the resort prices. I was just like, ‘Wow.’ I did not understand that hotel rates had been likely to be as highly-priced as they had been,” OFlaherty said.

Building Myrtle Seashore considerably less economical?

Greene, Hatley and OFlaherty explained that when improved demand from customers and rising labor and offer expenses are producing inns much more expensive in Myrtle Seaside, that does not essentially signify the region is starting to be fewer cost-effective.

“Everything is ticked up better,” Green mentioned. “But I consider that people today can even now find that affordable aspect of it. We’re not seeing any dips in occupancy.”

In other phrases, he mentioned, increased resort rates are not driving absent prospects.

If anything at all, hotel occupancy has truly risen at the very same time that the ordinary day-to-day rate for a place has long gone up.

Affordability in Myrtle Seaside has extended been calculated as a comparison to other locations, OFlaherty said. So long as Myrtle Seashore stays value as substantially or significantly less than similar locations, it will continue to draw tourists wanting for a “cheap vacation.”

“Myrtle Beach front can stay an cost-effective location with charges that are here right now for the reason that their opponents are charging the similar charges,” OFlaherty claimed.

However, even if points like the price of linens go back down in 2022, or labor gets to be more cost-effective, OFlaherty stated it is unlikely inns will lower their fees.

Some accommodations could try to generate desire with lessen premiums for the duration of slower seasons but absolutely not through the spring or summer season up coming year. OFlaherty likened it to the shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline. Even though gasoline has grow to be significantly extra obtainable given that the pipeline came back again on in May perhaps, firms have not reduced the price tag of gasoline — or pumped more oil — since they know folks will pay out a all those higher prices.

“That pipeline is working like it’s never run prior to. But have the prices likely down? No, not at all. Why? Since we acquired employed to it,” OFlaherty mentioned. “The resort market place is no distinctive.”

Profile Image of Chase Karacostas

Chase Karacostas writes about tourism in Myrtle Beach front and throughout South Carolina for McClatchy. He graduated from the College of Texas at Austin in 2020 with degrees in Journalism and Political Communication. He commenced operating for McClatchy in 2020 right after rising up in Texas, in which he has bylines in a few of the state’s premier print media shops as properly as the Texas Tribune masking condition politics, the surroundings, housing and the LGBTQ+ group.