Hotels Plan for a COVID-19-Informed Future


Source: Hospitality Net
July 17, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has roiled the hospitality industry, closing more than 5,000 hotels in the U.S. alone in March and April.

By the start of June, nearly half were still shuttered, according to STR, a hotel data provider.

Now, after months of lockdowns and travel restrictions, some parts of the world are slowly starting to reopen to international travelers. In other areas, regional travel is beginning in earnest. But in a world still grappling with the pandemic, it’s far from business as usual. Hotels are transforming their cleaning protocols and operating models based on the needs of an unprecedentedly germ-conscious public.

In the U.S. alone, COVID-19 cost the travel industry US$176 billion in cumulative losses from early March to May 16, according to the U.S. Travel Association.

U.S. hotel occupancy levels shrank to less than 25% in April, down 64% from a year ago, in what STR called the “worst single month ever.”

How quickly hotels recover will depend largely on the travel industry itself — namely whether people are willing to fly, says Daniel Fenton, Director of Global Tourism and Destination Development Services, Hotels & Hospitality Group, JLL.

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