European Authorities Set Out New Online Distribution Rules

Seven trending hotel news stories that will impact your hotel Revenue Strategy.

1. European Directive Passes New Regs On Online Platforms

The European Commission, European Parliament and Council of the European Union have set out new regulations for online platforms including Google and price comparison sites, such as Skyscanner.

The new regulations call for:

  • Increased transparency in search rankings
  • Mandatory disclosure of business practices
  • Disclosure of data use

The new rules also bestow new rights to sue platforms to “overcome fear of retaliation”.

The new rules apply to “the entire online platform economy” and aim to create “a fair, transparent and predictable business environment for businesses and traders using online platforms”.

The new EU regulations will come into force in 2020 and will be subject to review within 18 months.

Full story at Travolution.

2. UK Authorities Set Rules For Hotel Booking Sites

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has released guidelines for hotel booking sites, as it aims to crack down on misleading practices, such as failure to disclose the effect of payments on search results, misleading reference prices, misleading presentation of prices and misleading popularity and availability statements.

The new guidelines include:

The guidelines include:

  • Disclosure of paid for search results and rankings
  • Pricing transparency
  • Disclosure of all fees, charges and taxes
  • More accurate statements on availability and pricing

The new guidelines apply to all online accommodation booking services, including online travel agents (OTAs), metasearch engines, big hotel chains and individual hotels offering online booking. Companies have until 1 September 2019 to meet the new standards.

Full story at The Caterer.

3. Revenues Drop, Costs Escalate At Europe’s Hotels

January saw the largest decline in profit per room for hotels in mainland Europe since August 2016, with a 9.1% drop in Gross Operating Profit Per Available Room (GOPPAR) to €26.65, a result of falling revenues and rising costs.

January also saw a 0.2% drop in revenue per available room (RevPAR) to €81.19, a 1.5% increase in achieved average room rate at €141.04 and a 0.9 percentage points drop in occupancy.

“Whilst blame can undoubtedly be attributed to the time of year and we can’t be too quick to pass judgement on the outlook for 2019, volume levels in the region appear to be stabilising, and even falling back, which will hit ancillary revenues, forcing hoteliers to work harder to generate a profit,” said Michael Grove, Director of Hotel Intelligence and Customer Solutions, EMEA, at HotStats.

Full story at eTurboNews.

4. Hotel Values Continue Upwards Trend in Europe

Hotels in Lisbon, Moscow, Paris, Brussels and Berlin saw the most increase in value, according to the latest annual European Hotel Valuation Index by global hotel consultancy HVS.

Lisbon saw a 9% increase thanks to increased tourist from the US and Brazil. Moscow benefited from the FIFA World Cup, with an 8% increase in value and a reported 180% increase in RevPAR for June and July. Paris made its return to the top five with a 7% increase in values per room. In terms of the absolute value of hotel rooms, Paris, London, Zurich, Geneva and Rome presented the most expensive in Europe.

Full story at Breaking Travel News

5. Costs Dampen UK Hotels Profit

Increased payroll costs are dampening profits at UK hotels, according to the latest data from HotStats. The data tracking service reported a 2.6% decline in profit per room in January, despite a 3.4% increase in RevPAR, compared to the same month last year.

Occupancy grew by 0.2% to 64.8% while achieved average room rate rose 3.1% to £107.02. TrevPAR increased by 2.4%. However, payroll costs increased 0.3% to 35.4% of total revenue. GOPPAR for the month stood at £26.10.

Full story at HotStats.

6. Dubai: World’s Second Largest Hotel Pipeline

Dubai’s hotel pipeline is the second largest in the world, at 168 construction projects with 49,950 rooms, according to Lodging Econometrics’ year-end Global Construction Project Trend Report. The Emirate came second to New York City, with 171 hotels and 29,460 rooms.

The report found that the number of hotel construction projects globally increased by 7% in 2018, with 13,573 projects currently in the pipeline. Lodging Econometrics found that 6,352 hotels, with 1.1 million rooms, are currently under construction in the world.

Full story at Hotelier Middle East.

7. Edinburgh Tops UK Hotel Growth

Edinburgh remains the UK’s number one destination for hotel development, according to Colliers International’s fourth UK Hotels Market Index (UKHMI). The city has seen a robust upward RevPAR trend and continuous market appetite fuelling tourism growth.

Belfast came in second, thanks to a strong performance and low building costs. Liverpool came in third, with improved occupancy and ADR, as well as the highest four-year RevPAR trend. According to Colliers, the UK hotel market will see almost 18,000 new rooms open in 2019.

Full story at Boutique Hotelier.

Stay up on hotel Revenue Strategy news and discuss industry tech trends in the Hotel Revenue Strategy Leaders Group on LinkedIn.

Sarah McCay Tams, Director of Content, EMEA

Sarah joined Duetto in 2015 as a contributing editor covering Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA). In 2017, she was promoted to Director of Content, EMEA. An experienced B2B travel industry journalist, Sarah spent 14 years working in the Middle East, most notably as senior editor – hospitality for ITP Publishing Group in Dubai, where she headed up the editorial teams on Hotelier Middle East, Caterer Middle East and Arabian Travel News. Sarah is now based back in the UK.

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