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Revenue Strategy Round-Up: Recovery Will Speed Up

Stay up to date with the latest trending hotel news stories that will impact your hotel Revenue Strategy.

1. Hotel Recovery Continues, But Concerns Surround Labor Shortage And Inflation 

On January 24 the Americas Lodging Investment Summit (ALIS) saw hotel industry leaders gather to discuss what lies in store for the year ahead. The consensus was that although the recovery is ticking along nicely, with leisure demand driving the recovery, it seems that issues around inflation and labor shortages are causing concerns. 

"It's been a strong recovery, but there are still some bumps in the road," said STR Senior Vice President Carter Wilson. "December was the strongest month the industry has had during the entire pandemic. And the week between Christmas and New Year's recorded the highest ADR of any week ever. So, the leisure demand is not that deterred by Omicron." 

"Inflation will make 2022 look very different from 2019," Larry Cuculic, President and CEO of Best Western Hotels said. "That puts pressure on labor, puts pressure on supply, and the cost of doing business. So, while the topline might look similar or slightly better, from our perspective what we're concerned about is the bottom line for our hoteliers." 

Full story: Travel Weekly 

2. Industry Recovery Will Accelerate, STR Predicts

“The Numbers: What To Expect in 2022 and Beyond” panel of the Americas Lodging Investment Summit last month came up with some interesting insights about the recovery of the industry and the speed at which it’s progressing. 

STR Senior Vice President Carter Wilson said that although 2022 has got off to a slow start thanks to Omicron, labor shortages, and inflation, he expects the US hotel industry’s recovery to accelerate as we head further into the year.  STR’s latest forecast is calling for nominal average daily rate to recover completely by the time 2022 closes and nominal RevPAR to return to 2019 levels in 2023.

Wilson said: “This is a very different type of recovery depending on if you're looking at a nominal or real basis. Nominally, next year’s RevPAR will be back to its 2019 levels. On a real basis, it's going to be post-2025.”

Full Story: CoStar 

3. RevPAR Recovery Highest For Middle East Hotels

Year-end 2021 data from STR shows that the Middle East hotel industry reported the highest RevPAR among the global regions, 85.6% of the pre-pandemic comparable.

Robin Rossmann, managing director at STR, said: “Year-end data displays the significant variance in recovery by region, stemming from different levels of pandemic restrictions around the world. The Middle East has been a leader in both opening to international arrivals as well as hosting large events, such as Expo 2020, which has driven hotel performance in Dubai. On the other side of the spectrum, there are areas, such as Europe, where recovery has stalled due to the reimplementation of COVID restrictions. As we get further into 2022 and subsequent lockdowns phase out, we expect recovery to resume.”

Full story: TravelDailyNews 

4. European Travelers To Spend More In 2022

According to recent research by Accor, European travelers are planning to spend ‘significantly more’ in 2022. 

The company’s Northern Europe Travel Trends Report shows that travelers from the UK, Poland, Germany, Russia, and The Netherlands are set to spend up to 39% more on travel than they did in 2019. The report also shows the promising news that, despite Omicron and Delta threatening to slow things down at the end of last year and the beginning of this, 80% of the people questioned said they did plan to travel in 2022. 

Karelle Lamouche, Chief Commercial Officer for Accor Northern Europe, said: “Last year travel was spontaneous, often booked and taken within a few days. Now, post-Omicron, people are planning and booking travel already for the next three years. They have much to look forward to and make up for in 2022.”

Full story: Phocuswire 

5. Omicron Fears Lessen As Americans Are Ready For Travel 

According to a report by Destination Analysts, almost 82% of American people surveyed said they felt ready to travel, suggesting that people are no longer so worried about the variants, and are ready to put the fears behind them. 

Over 92% of respondents said they will be taking at least one trip in the next year, and more than three-quarters said they’ve dreamed about, and planned, travel in the last week.

“Travel sentiment recovered very quickly,” said Erin Francis-Cummings, President and CEO of Destination Analysts. “The ready-to-go mindset is essentially the highest it’s been,” she added. 

Full Story: CNBC 

6. UK Travelers More Likely To Use Travel Agents

The Flight Centre UK’s 2022 trends report shows that British people are more likely to book trips through a travel agent now than ever before. 

‘The Travel Agent is King’ was the main takeaway from the report which looked into the impact the pandemic has had on the booking and travel behavior of British travelers.

The report showed that 54% of people surveyed said they felt happier using a travel agent, rather than booking vacations themselves, because it gives them ‘peace of mind to travel knowing an expert has their back’. 

"Pandemic-era travel requires more emphasis on pre-departure planning than ever before. Add to that, unexpected changes and cancelations due to outbreaks, reduced airline capacity and scaled-down airline staff, it makes having a one-stop-shop service with a travel agent invaluable," the report states.

7. Loyalty Schemes In For A Tweak!

According to the 2022 American Hotel and Lodging Association State of the Industry report, loyalty programs are due for a makeover, as COVID-19 has mixed up hotels’ guest mixes significantly. 

Loyalty schemes are good for driving revenue and giving hoteliers a direct line of communication to  their customers. But, times have changed and so now it’s time for loyalty programs to change with them, it seems. 

The report, published at the end of January, states: "With high-volume business travel down, traditional loyalty programs no longer make sense. The most effective loyalty programs will offer more personalized rewards that meet the needs of occasional business travelers and leisure travelers, as well." 

Cindy Estis Green, CEO of Kalibri Labs, said loyalty programs ‘have a dramatic effect on retaining customers, because a lot of the convenience is built within the apps -- mobile check-in, keyless entry -- those kinds of things are driven by being a member of the loyalty program’.

Full story: Phocuswire 

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