MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) — As spring approaches and sporting events draw student athletes to Myrtle Beach, area hotels are starting to get busier.
“It’s a nice change of pace to have some free time at the beach,” said Henry Bielen, who is in town for a baseball tournament with his Delaware Valley University teammates in Pennsylvania. “Getting together with friends and soaking up the atmosphere of Myrtle is a big part of our first time.”
Crowds on Ocean Boulevard are starting to swell, with families and college students heading to Myrtle Beach for events or spring break.
“For us, our first time here, there were a lot of funky cars and a lot of street life,” Bielen said. “We liked the tourist attractions.
The latest hotel occupancy data from the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce is from last week. He said almost 54% of rooms were then booked, an increase of 37% compared to the same week last year.
Some hotels, however, are still unsure how this season will unfold.
“We see a lot of traffic like pedestrians on weekends,” Roxanne Towers chief operating officer Donald Burton said. “A little hesitant for the coming summer as bookings aren’t as strong as they were last season.”
Burton said he thinks gas prices and the political climate could impact the number of people traveling this year.
“We’re hoping for a great year,” he said. “I don’t see it in my reservations yet. But some people may still be hesitant to book. As if they were still planning to go on vacation, they just didn’t pull the trigger.