In many coastal markets, Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends serve as the bookends to the summer season. Occupancy for these weekends is often high, as people who are excited about the arrival of the warm weather, and those chasing that one last warm weekend away, flock to beachside destinations. In the middle of these two weekends is July 4th, which is often the peak of annual occupancy in the market.
It is expected that nearly 49 million Americans will venture more than 50 miles from home this year to celebrate July 4th. This is a rise of 4.1% from last year and it is anticipated that eighty-five percent of travelers will drive to their destination. Lower gas prices, low unemployment and rising disposable incomes are all working together to encourage people to hit the road for the weekend.
Also, the fact that July 4th falls on a Thursday this year as opposed to a Wednesday should have a positive impact on occupancy. Who doesn't love a four day weekend?!
So, where are people going? Beyond Pricing analyzed hundreds of markets in the United States to spot significant increases in occupancy and we have an answer - the coast. Let's take a look at which beaches will be full of people celebrating next week.
The Carolinas are the clear winners. Starting in the Outer Banks we can see that occupancy is at an all time high and it is already hitting 95% for July 4th. Heading down the coast we see that Carolina Beach occupancy is at 86% and in Hilton Head and Isle of Palms occupancy is reaching 90%.
Fun Fact: 150 million hot dogs will be consumed over July 4th. Have you got your grill ready?
Occupancy is already at 88% for July 4th and average annual occupancy is 57%. Based on historical trends this coming July 4th is on track to be the busiest time in the market ever.
Fun Fact: Americans will spend more that $1.6 billion on beer and wine over July 4th, so don't forget to pack a koozie!
Tybee Island, Georgia
Occupancy is at 87% for July 4th which is more than double the annual average of 41%. Many of these beach destinations are considered "drive to" markets from major metropolitan areas. Tens of thousands of residents of Atlanta will make their way to Tybee Island to escape the urban summer heat.
Fun Fact: more than a quarter of Americans will buy patriotic merchandise to help celebrate July 4th. Make sure you bring your best red, white and blue to the front of the closet!
We are seeing a similar numbers in Galveston as we are in Tybee Island. Occupancy is at 86% and average annual occupancy is 39%. Similar again to Tybee Island, Galveston sees a major share of their visitors make the drive south from Houston and other major cities in Texas to cool down along the Gulf Coast.
Fun Fact: there will be more than 16,000 fireworks displays held on July 4th. Don't forget to check out one in your area!
Lincoln City, Oregon
Occupancy in Lincoln City is also at 86%, which is already above July 4th 2018 occupancy which reached 83%, which was the highest occupancy for the past year. Labor Day and Columbus Day are already booked above the average annual occupancy of 50%, so it's time to raise prices for those weekends if you still have stock left!
(Not So) Fun Fact: If you are traveling on July 3rd in a major metro area, you can expect to face delays as much as four times a normal commute. Nationwide, delays are expected to increase by approximately 9%. Pack snacks and patience!
In coastal markets in particular, summer is a key time to maximize profits, as demand often decreases significantly in the winter months. It is important to understand demand trends in your market so you can capitalize on peak times and optimize your revenue. Beyond Pricing can help with this!
About Beyond Pricing
Founded in 2013 by veterans of revenue management in the airline and hospitality space, Beyond Pricing is the world's first revenue management and dynamic pricing software for vacation rentals. Driven by big-data machine learning and predictive analytics, Beyond Pricing has priced over $2 billion in bookings for 150,000 listings in more than 7,000 cities. The all-inclusive solution offers integrations with 20 of the top property management systems and direct integrations with top listing sites. For more information, visit: https://beyondpricing.com