What to Know Before Visiting Charleston – Weather, COVID Warnings

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected Charleston as much as any other city in the continental United States. Notices and mandates are constantly reassessed and updated. At the time of publication, the latest official update from the City of Charleston is that masks were only required inside city offices and buildings, regardless of vaccination status.

Here’s an overview of what you need to know about these rules and regulations, as they are published, along with advice on the weather and the best time to visit.

COVID-19 Rules

If you are arriving in Charleston from an international location, you must follow the US federal process for safe travel. This usually involves uploading the vaccination card information to an authorized secure travel app, but your airline’s website or travel agent should know the latest rules. You must print out your test results and have a physical copy of your vaccination card when you arrive in case you need to present them.

As noted, the only current rule in Charleston regarding the pandemic is that masks are only required inside city offices and buildings, regardless of vaccination status.

A flag with a charcoal portrait of a dark man with a hat in his hands in front of a beige building with steps leading to the entrance

I have always found that there are many things to do in Charleston.

Gavin McIntyre for Insider


When to visit

Charleston has a humid subtropical climate, which means relatively mild winters and hot, humid summers. Average high and low temperatures are around 38 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit in January and around 74 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit in August.

Visiting in the summer months means you need to bring and apply sunscreen and make sure you stay hydrated. As with most destinations in the region, the city is vulnerable to hurricanes and the official hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30. It’s rare for Charleston to be directly affected by major hurricanes, but check local weather forecasts before you travel so you can be prepared for anything.

For the best accommodation deals, as well as increased availability, I like to visit shoulder seasons like spring or fall, when the weather is still nice and there are a bit fewer crowds and less competition for properties.

If you’re planning a summer trip to Charleston, plan to stretch your budget or consider staying only midweek for lower rates.

See Insider’s Complete Guide to Visiting Charleston.

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