CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Tourism in the Lowcountry is starting to bounce back on a countywide scale. While numbers last fall stemmed from those traveling for business and attending conferences, this year it comes from those driving in.
The numbers for 2020 showing the uptick in leisure travelers on weekends but a decrease for corporate travel during the week.
Last weekend, county-wide our hotel occupancy rate was running mid-70s and that’s county-wide. It typically would’ve been running mid 80s. So down 10 points. But during the week we’re still running 50%, we’re down 40% of where we would have been last year.Doug Warner, VP Media & Innovation Explore Charleston
Doug Warner with Explore Charleston said while the market for flights is still making its comeback, the distance travelers are will to drive has doubled. And while case numbers rise elsewhere—Warner says Charleston County is remaining relatively safe from out-of-town visitors and our residents alike.
Warner went on to note, ‘the best way we can maintain an economic recovery is to be smart about the choices we’re making because we need to keep our COVID numbers in check.’
And while it is thought more would be back at work with the increased volume of visitors, he said that’s not the case.
What we’re hearing anecdotally is more the opposite issue, owners trying to get people back into the work force, and having difficulty finding employees.Doug Warner, VP Media & Innovation Explore Charleston
Warner said that Explore Charleston plans to hold another job fair for the tourism industry to fill those spots in the near future.