The Coast Guard's cost for using a boat, helicopter and personnel to search for 42-year-old Amy Robinson was more than $42,000, while the city of North Myrtle Beach spent about $8,000.
Authorities in South Carolina's Horry County are considering charging Robinson with some of the cost of the search.
The Gaston County woman was reported missing last weekend by her husband, Paul Arrington. He was charged in North Myrtle Beach this week with criminal conspiracy and making a false complaint.
Investigators think the couple made up the story so she could avoid facing forgery and identity theft charges in Charlotte this week.