City of Myrtle Beach looks ahead to summer months during ‘pre-tourist’ season

Published: Mar. 24, 2023 at 11:13 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - As we welcome spring, the City of Myrtle Beach is also welcoming what they call “pre-tourism.”

With the weather warming up, more people are making their way to the Grand Strand, but not as quickly as they were last year at this time.

“We rented out an Airbnb, and we’re just on the boardwalk now getting ready to do some tourist things,” said Regina Ashton, visiting Myrtle Beach from Savannah, Georgia. “We’re going to get on the Ferris Wheel, we’re going to walk the boardwalk and all that,” she added.

What some refer to as the pre-tourist season, is bringing people like Ashton and others ready to enjoy spring break right here to Myrtle Beach.

“It feels good, the weather is nice, and it turned out to be a lot better than what we expected,” said Ashton.

New data from the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber stated bookings throughout the city look a bit slower in mid-April but Coastal Carolina University Professor, Taylor Damonte said things are certainly looking up.

“This is typical of the spring season, we really don’t know how spring is going to turn out until we were able to look at march and April together, said Demonte, Director of CCU’s Clay Brittain Jr. Center for Resort Tourism Program.That’s because Easter and Passover, those major national religious holidays as well as spring break season, that varies from year to year,” he added.

Damonte said occupancy, pricing, and revenue within the last week were all forecasted to be high, with consideration of both Easter and Spring break coming even earlier this year.

He said with Myrtle Beach being a drive-to destination it’s still competing alongside other beaches throughout the Spring based on one element, the temperature of the water. “We were really competing during the spring season with one hand tied behind our back competing with south Florida because it’s lovely weather,” he said.

However, that has not stopped those visiting so far.

“It’s an absolutely beautiful spot that I think a lot of people would generally go to every single time if they chose to,” said Drake Muray, visiting Myrtle Beach for the first time alongside friends from Maryland at Towson University.

As for Ashton, she shared similar sentiments.

“it’s not too crowded, I don’t know because, well it is Friday, it’s the weekend so I don’t know but it’s not too crowded, so that’s a good thing,” she said.

Damonte wanted to remind everyone whether local or visiting to “pack their patience”, and be understanding as businesses continue to staff up ahead of Summer.