Why are hotels, Airbnbs so expensive in Myrtle Beach, SC?

Hotel rates in Myrtle Beach front have skyrocketed this summertime, much surpassing their lows for 2020 and even earning pre-pandemic prices search like a low-cost offer.

For much of July, the ordinary daily price for a hotel area in the Grand Strand — $235-$260 — is anyplace from 15% to 30% bigger than 2019, before the pandemic, and up to 70% increased than 2020, according to facts from the Myrtle Beach front Space Chamber of Commerce and Coastal Carolina College.

The better cost of hotel rooms in Myrtle Seashore in contrast to earlier several years strikes at 1 of the region’s most pleasing characteristics for vacationers — affordability.

The common everyday level for a resort space the week ending in July 24 was $257, 67% bigger than 2020 and 29% higher than 2019. The large rates occur as Myrtle Beach hotel occupancy has stayed near 85% — just limited of what tourism leaders typically take into account to be “full occupancy” — for considerably of June and July.

“The days of rock-bottom charges are gone,” Myrtle Beach front Hospitality Association CEO Stephen Greene claimed. “Everything in relation to vacation is higher than it was when we have been going by means of the pandemic, and I consider it has to be. That was so reduced that we ended up possessing a really hard time, you know, holding the doors open.”

Holiday rentals, like Airbnb, in Myrtle Beach front are far more expensive than hotels suitable now: averaging $336 for every night for the 7 days of July 18-24, in accordance to the chamber. But residence rentals, on common, have three moments as lots of bedrooms as resorts, in accordance to CCU’s details.

The price of non-lodge holiday vacation rentals has stayed relatively static in contrast to 2020, when charges went up sharply in the area as Airbnbs and other rentals received acceptance simply because individuals sought to steer clear of hotel crowds all through the pandemic. Similar data for 2019 is not accessible.

What is driving up resort price ranges?

Greene stated the large cost of motels right now is yet another symptom of inflation across the American economy.

Just one of the biggest variables driving the value raises in Myrtle Beach has been the growing price tag of labor.

Hospitality corporations for months have struggled to employ — and hold on to — more than enough personnel to hold their companies performing. Places to eat have experienced to leave tables vacant, quite a few motels have only rented out 80-90% of their rooms, and merchants and assistance companies have experienced to minimize their hours or days open up to reduce staff burnout.

That struggle to come across plenty of labor has led employers to present bigger and better wages or indication-on bonuses in the hope of attracting new employees and getting them to remain. The expense of those wages is then passed on to clients in the sort of costlier stays.

Not only has labor amplified the foundation expense of operating a lodge, but some locations have had to deal with offer concerns as effectively.

Myrtle Seaside City Council member Jackie Hatley, who owns the Sea Dip Motel & Condos, claimed she’s struggled to find enough towels and linens for her rooms. Not only is there a lack of the linens on their own, but she claimed her cleaning assistance has experienced to cost extra simply because the expense of cleansing materials has absent up as well. Correct now, she only has about 85-90% of her rooms offered on weekends since she’s continue to limited quite a few housekeeping, upkeep and front desk team.

“The demand is rather substantial, but we never have our comprehensive offer on the web,” reported Greene, of the Hospitality Association. “When you go to your favourite cafe, you are likely to see traces wrapped about the creating, but you’re (also) heading to see sections that are continue to blocked off for the reason that we really do not have staffing.”

Hatley explained the difficulties she’s facing are sector-large, and she does not imagine they will amount out till following year. As for labor shortage challenges, Hatley that is a far more existential problem that won’t be solved at any time shortly.

“In the subsequent two to three years, the hospitality field as a entire, nationally, is likely to have a challenge with becoming equipped to recruit,” Hatley reported. “We’ve been looking at it arrive, but it’s genuinely right here now, and we’re going to have to get artistic. … What the response is to that, I’m not accurately absolutely sure.”

Doug OFlaherty, the vice president of functions for the S.C. Restaurant and Lodging Affiliation, explained hotel premiums have been taking pictures up across the point out and aren’t always unique to Myrtle Seashore.

Searching beyond labor and offer challenges, OFlaherty stated the pent-up demand from customers to vacation right after additional than a calendar year of pandemic lockdowns has pushed up charges. Some hotels, he said, may possibly also be charging higher charges to recoup very last year’s losses, but most of the premiums are going toward covering people increased foundation fees.

Nonetheless, OFlaherty said he was however shocked to see how significantly accommodations had been charging in modern months. He echoed a sentiment getting expressed by many tourism experts: Few expected trip journey to occur back again as quickly or intensely as it has this spring and summertime.

“I am using a prolonged weekend myself and going out of city, and I was flabbergasted at the hotel rates. I was just like, ‘Wow.’ I did not notice that lodge rates were likely to be as pricey as they were being,” OFlaherty reported.

Earning Myrtle Beach front significantly less economical?

Greene, Hatley and OFlaherty reported that whilst enhanced demand from customers and climbing labor and source prices are building accommodations additional high-priced in Myrtle Seaside, that doesn’t necessarily mean the area is getting less affordable.

“Everything is ticked up increased,” Environmentally friendly said. “But I believe that men and women can even now locate that affordable facet of it. We’re not seeing any dips in occupancy.”

In other words, he claimed, bigger resort fees are not driving absent shoppers.

If anything at all, hotel occupancy has really risen at the very same time that the ordinary every day rate for a room has absent up.

Affordability in Myrtle Seaside has long been measured as a comparison to other places, OFlaherty reported. So very long as Myrtle Beach stays price tag as a great deal or significantly less than identical destinations, it will keep on to attract travelers searching for a “cheap trip.”

“Myrtle Seashore can continue being an reasonably priced destination with premiums that are here these days since their rivals are charging the identical rates,” OFlaherty stated.

On the other hand, even if items like the expense of linens go back down in 2022, or labor turns into much less expensive, OFlaherty explained it’s unlikely motels will reduce their charges.

Some accommodations could possibly consider to generate need with lessen rates in the course of slower seasons but absolutely not through the spring or summer time up coming yr. OFlaherty likened it to the shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline. While gasoline has turn out to be considerably additional offered due to the fact the pipeline came again on in May possibly, organizations have not reduced the price tag of gasoline — or pumped much more oil — since they know people today will spend a individuals greater rates.

“That pipeline is running like it is in no way operate right before. But have the price ranges going down? No, not at all. Why? Due to the fact we bought employed to it,” OFlaherty reported. “The lodge marketplace is no different.”

Profile Image of Chase Karacostas

Chase Karacostas writes about tourism in Myrtle Seaside and throughout South Carolina for McClatchy. He graduated from the College of Texas at Austin in 2020 with levels in Journalism and Political Interaction. He started operating for McClatchy in 2020 immediately after expanding up in Texas, in which he has bylines in three of the state’s biggest print media outlets as effectively as the Texas Tribune masking point out politics, the atmosphere, housing and the LGBTQ+ group.