Marco Island is one of SWFL’s most affordable beaches
"Affordable" probably isn't the first word on most people's minds when they think of Marco Island, which is known for its towering luxury resorts and members-only beach, but TripAdvisor crunched the numbers and ranked the island No. 6. on its Summer Savings: 24 Most Affordable Florida West Coast Beaches list.
The list is based on the average cost of a week's stay during the off season. A week’s stay in a two-bedroom property on Marco Island averages $995, according to TripAdvisor.
Katie O'Hara, director of sales and marketing for the Marco Island Chamber of Commerce, said Marco Island won TripAdvisor's 2014 Traveler's Choice Award for best island in the U.S., and it was No.
4 on the international list. This year it was No. 8 on the U.S. list, which is based on user reviews and ratings.
O'Hara said she's excited that Marco Island is featured on another TripAdvisor list and hopes it will bring more people to the island.
"Obviously we're thrilled," she said. "We look forward to continuing to grow as a beach destination."
City Manager Roger Hernstadt agreed.
"As someone who has lived on Florida's east coast and the Keys for many years, I am amazed that many people are just now discovering the unique beauty of Marco Island and our beaches as a first class, affordable family vacation venue," Hernstadt said, "but thanks to TripAdvisor's rankings, the word will definitely spread to many more new potential visitors."
The cheapest Marco Island rental listed on TripAdvisor is a one-bed, one-bath property where a five-night stay during the off-season costs an estimated $285.
The most expensive rental costs an estimated $15,552 for a five-night stay during the off season and has four bedrooms, three bathrooms and a private boat dock.
“Amazing house with the most stunning view. Clean and very comfortable. Everything you could wish for,” a reviewer wrote on TripAdvisor.
TripAdvisor averaged the prices of the most affordable destinations on Florida’s east coast, as well, and found that, on average, the west coast is more affordable than the east coast.
Cape Canaveral is the most affordable east coast beach, averaging $903 per week, which is almost $200 more than it costs for a week's stay in Port Charlotte, the west coast's most affordable beach.
The most expensive of the least expensive on the east coast is Pompano Beach, averaging $1,313 per week. Key Largo is at the top of the west coast list, averaging $1,293 per week.
Other beaches on the "24 Most Affordable Florida West Coast Beaches" list include Cape Coral, Fort Myers and Bonita Springs. The full list can be viewed on TripAdvisor.com.