Seniors face challenges, still plan to attend beach week

2020+graduate+Michael+Auth%2C+along+with+other+2020+graduates%2C+during+last+year%27s+beach+week.

Photo courtesy Michael Auth

2020 graduate Michael Auth, along with other 2020 graduates, during last year’s beach week.

The end of the school year is approaching and for seniors this means a lot of things. From prom to graduation, this is an exciting time for them. One event seniors look forward to each year is beach week, however due to the COVID-19 virus this highlight to kick off the summer is in jeopardy.

Usually around February and March, seniors begin to look for houses or hotel rooms that are available for rent the week after graduation. Common choices are either renting apartments or Airbnbs depending on components like location, availability and pricing. For location, most seniors choose to go to either Bethany Beach or Ocean City, and while the two are considered hotspots for the one-week vacation, other nearby beaches are always under consideration. 

While renting a place to stay in Ocean City might be difficult due to high demand, attractions like the boardwalk, which starts from 7th street and is 2.5 miles in length, make it worthwhile. The time window of these first two months is normally when seniors make their reservations, so facilities to rent become more scarce and nothing after that is guaranteed. “It took a few weeks to find any remotely good house to stay, but we eventually found the perfect house that fit all of our checkboxes,” senior Mica Rabin said.

The pricing is a crucial factor seniors have to take into account, because having a certain budget may limit choices but may also make the search process less tedious. After going through websites like Zillow or vrbo.com, seniors tend to then contact the owner of the housing facility before booking the place to ask for any accommodations they require of the group. Due to the unpredictability and current state of the virus, owners have chosen to enforce their limited capacity rule even more strictly. 

In all, this process is not something that can be completed in one day, but rather an effort that is going to take time and effort by the entirety of a group.“Renting a house for beach week was definitely an extensive and expensive process, but it’s worth it to experience a trip with friends to celebrate graduating,” senior Nani Gupta said.

I was initially hesitant about beach week due to Covid concerns.”

— Adam Solomon

The earlier they try to find a place to stay the better, but with the virus’ uncertain path it is hard to predict where parts of the country will stand months in advance. While things are trending in the right direction, it is hard to imagine that beach week will be anything close to what it used to be pre-virus time. But despite concerns and with daily cases decreasing as well as larger availability of vaccines, it looks like beaches will be filled with high school graduates for yet another summer. “I was initially hesitant about beach week due to Covid concerns. However, the situation appears to be improving, so I’m planning on going, but will remain cautious,” senior Adam Solomon said.