Edited by: Keri Stooksbury
The Cost of an Ocean View Vacation Around the U.S. [2023 Data Study]
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From breathtaking sunsets to the sound of waves crashing at night, there’s no denying the magnetic pull of vacationing oceanfront. From the shores of Malibu, California, to the Florida Keys, these coveted accommodations offer the epitome of a dream beach getaway. However, such beautiful experiences often come with a hefty price tag.
To uncover the cost of beachfront bliss across the U.S., we analyzed the average nightly and weekly cost of beachfront hotels and vacation homes across 75 popular beach towns. Further, we looked at the average cost of non-beachfront stays to find where summer travelers will pay the highest premiums for an ocean view. Keep reading to see which of these beautiful beachfront cities offer you the most ocean view for the least amount of money.
America’s Most and Least Expensive Ocean Views
There’s nothing like recharging at the beach — from reading your favorite novel on your blanket to frolicking in the ocean — it simply can’t be beaten! However, with the current state of inflation leaving more than half of Americans uncertain about affording a vacation this year, it’s essential to find affordable beach towns that offer an enjoyable getaway without breaking the bank.
On average, a week-long vacation with beachfront accommodations will run you roughly $3,353. If you split this with family and friends, this price tag may not seem as daunting, but it still packs a punch.
For those seeking a lavish beachfront experience where money is no object, we discovered that Montauk, New York, tops the list as the most expensive beachfront stay. A 1-week oceanfront stay in Montauk will set you back $6,454, with beachfront home rentals averaging $1,205 per night and beachfront hotels averaging $639 per night.
Taking the second and third spot for the most expensive 1-week beachfront stay are Southampton, New York, with an average price of $6,391 per week, and East Hampton, New York, with an average cost of $6,178 per week.
If you’re looking for some of the cheapest beachfront hotels, visit places like Cedar Key, Florida, which ranked first on our list as one of the least expensive beach towns with an oceanfront view. Cedar Key will run you roughly $1,330 per week for a beachfront house averaging $189 per night and a beachfront hotel averaging $191 per night. Cedar Key is a stunning beachfront destination and home to restaurants like Steamers Clam Bar and Grill, which features everything from snow crab legs to ahi tuna, and more.
Ocean Springs, Mississippi, ranks second on our list as one of the most affordable beach towns with an average beachfront stay of $1,491 per week. This coastal town offers plenty of things to do, including shopping, golfing, boat cruises, and more!
Claiming the third spot on our list for the least expensive beachfront stay is Ocean Shores, Washington, with an average cost of $1,995 per week. Port Aransas, Texas, follows closely behind in fourth place, with an average price of $2,048 per week. These beachfront destinations provide more affordable options for those seeking a budget-friendly beach getaway.
Where You’ll Pay the Highest Premiums for an Ocean View
Sometimes you bite the bullet and splurge on a beachfront accommodation, however, staying at a non-beachfront home may be tempting when you see how many margaritas and crab dips you could enjoy with the money you saved.
We found that staying at a beachfront home with an ocean view adds 27% to average nightly prices in the U.S. For instance, In Malibu, there’s a $769 nightly price difference between beachfront and non-beachfront stays and a whopping $5,383 weekly price difference.
Laguna Beach, California, lands in our second spot with a $421 nightly price difference between beachfront and non-beachfront stays, which comes out to almost a $3,000 weekly price difference. Long Beach, California ($414 nightly price difference) and Newport Beach, California ($396 nightly price difference) also have vastly different price tags between beachfront and non-beachfront accommodations.
South Carolina beach towns outside of Charleston, Folly Beach, and Kiawah Island land in our fifth and sixth spots respectively, with price differences of $255+ per night and $1,700+ per week.
Thinking of renting a beachfront home for the week? Check out our full data table below to see the average nightly and weekly prices of both beachfront and non-beachfront vacation homes in 75 popular beach towns across the U.S.
Image Credit: Nick Fox via Shutterstock
To discover the cost of an ocean view around the U.S., we compiled a list of 75 of the most popular beach towns from Travel & Leisure’s Best Beach Towns in the U.S. and Southern Living’s Prettiest Beach Towns in the U.S. Next, we used Airbnb listings to find the average nightly price of both an entire house and a hotel in each town. We applied the “beachfront” filter in Airbnb to ensure we were analyzing listings with an ocean view.
In each town, we averaged the nightly price of a house and the nightly price of a hotel to find the average nightly price of beachfront accommodations. We then multiplied that price by 7 to find the average cost of beachfront accommodations for a 1-week stay.
Renting a beachfront stay on Airbnb doesn’t have to break the bank. If you’re looking for some of the cheapest beach houses, visit places like Cedar Key, Florida; Ocean Springs, Mississippi; and Ocean City, Maryland. Or, if you want to relax in the lap of luxury, book an oceanfront hotel in Montauk, New York, or Malibu, California. No matter where you end up vacationing, consider our guide to the best credit cards to book your Airbnb or VRBO stay with to maximize every dollar you’re spending.
Featured Image Credit: Upgraded Points
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