News for the Hospitality Executive
September 13, 2011 — Today, hotels.com®, the leading provider of lodging
worldwide, released its biannual Hotel Price
Index™ (HPI®), revealing a 3 percent
global price increase and a gradual recovery despite major natural
catastrophes and world events affecting travel during the first half of
the year. Room rates are still lower than their peak in mid-2007,
indicating to travelers that good deals and value are within reach for
The hotels.com Hotel Price Index (HPI) is a regular survey of hotel prices in major city destinations across the world. The HPI is based on bookings made on hotels.com and prices shown are those actually paid by customers (rather than advertised rates) for the first half of 2011. The report largely compares prices paid in 2010 with prices paid in 2011. The key findings of the Hotel Price Index:
Influential Factors in American Travel at Home and Abroad
Americans continued to see a weak U.S. dollar compared to other currencies, meaning travel outside the country’s borders was more costly than anticipated. Americans paid an increase of 11 percent at European hotels in 2011 compared to 2010; a 5 percent increase in North America; a 4 percent increase in the Caribbean; and a 1 percent increase in Asia. In addition to the weak currency, 2011 was a year of major natural disasters which greatly affected travel, including major flooding in Nashville, and devastating tornadoes that caused major damage to Minneapolis and Joplin, Missouri. Despite the natural disaster, Joplin’s year-over-year average daily rate increased 3 percent, but time will tell if that will remain constant for the rest of the year. Joplin is the tenth least expensive city in the U.S. according to this year’s HPI.
After the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in March, travel to the country dropped, even in capital city Tokyo, located 250 miles south of the disaster. Reykjavik, Iceland and Christchurch, New Zealand were also subject to the extraordinary forces of Mother Nature. Massive volcanic ash clouds in Reykjavik and the aftermath of two 6.0+ magnitude earthquakes in Christchurch may have been factors in the 44 percent and 38 percent price rises in each city, respectively. These rises counter the typical trend of lower prices after a natural disaster.
Where are Americans Traveling Internationally?
From Monte Carlo, Monaco to Vieques, Puerto Rico, the top ten most expensive destinations’ daily rates rose, on average, 22 percent year-over-year. Each city on the list cost American travelers more than $350 dollars a night. The city that topped the list, Bora Bora (located in the French Polynesian islands), costs more than double that amount, claiming over $800 a night from American vacationers.
Which Regions Are Growing In Popularity for Americans?
Hong Kong ranked as the eighth most visited city by Americans in 2011, while other Asian cities including Bangkok (17), Shanghai (18), Beijing (20), Dubai (21) and Singapore(24) ranked in the top 25 most visited international destinations by Americans.
On the other side of the world, Americans paid an average daily rate of $207 in the Caribbean after a four percent increase. Latin American hotel rooms rose two percent in 2011 with rooms costing an average daily rate of $153.
Who are the World’s Biggest Spenders?
“Despite the gradual upward trend in hotel prices compared to recent bargain basement rates, there are still plenty of great deals for consumers,” said Victor Owens, vice president of marketing North America for hotels.com. “Sales are popping up constantly, especially last-minute sales on desirable locations. There are plenty of cities that still have reduced average hotel rates. Even popular tourist destinations offer deals during the off-peak season.”
*Data includes city and its surrounding areas.
For the full report, featuring infographics, detailed maps, and a city-by-city breakdown, visit: www.hotel-price-index.com.
About the HPI™
Hotels.com® is a leading provider of lodging worldwide, offering almost 140,000 properties in over 60 countries from national chain hotels and all-inclusive resorts to local favorites and bed & breakfasts. Hotels.com is the smarter way to book travel by offering welcomerewards®, an industry leading loyalty rewards program; the real opinions of other travelers captured in over 1.5 million Guest Reviews and; a Price Match Guarantee, so that those booking with hotels.com can be assured they are getting the best deal, either online or by speaking directly to a travel expert at 1-800-2-HOTELS 24 hours a day. For more information, please visit hotels.com. Hotels.com is an operating company of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE). Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hotelsdotcom and Twitter via www.twitter.com/hotelsdotcom or visit the hotels.com Travel Smart Blog for consumer and business travel information. Get clayed at http://www.clayyourself.com. Detailed Hotel Price Index data is available at: http://www.hotel-price-index.com, hotels.com, A Smarter Way to Book™.
Hotels.com, Hotel Price Index, HPI and the hotels.com logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of hotels.com, LP. Other logos or products and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners © 2011 hotels.com, LP. All rights reserved. CST # 2083949-50
Taylor L. Cole, APR