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New Hotel Price Index (HPI) Data Shows West Coast Hotel Pricing Growth
of 8.6% Outpaced the East Coast's 4.4% Growth for First Six Months of 2012


DALLAS, Sept. 27, 2012  -- The West Coast is on the rise in popularity and average hotel prices reflect this trend as revealed in the latest data from the Hotels.com® Hotel Price Index™ (HPI®). When comparing 10 major cities on each coast, Hotels.com found that West Coast cities saw an average hotel price increase of 8.6 percent compared to the 4.4 percent of those on the East Coast.

The HPI tracks real prices paid per room by Hotels.com customers at approximately 140,000 properties within the Hotels.com network in major destinations around the world. This edition of the report, which compares the first six months of 2012 with the same period in 2011, shows an upward trend in hotel prices across all global regions, resulting in an average global increase of 4 percent. This is the first time in five years that Hotels.com has seen an increase across the globe.

"We first saw business travel regain strength as the economy started to rebound a few years ago, and as a result we saw the travel industry in cities like New York City, Washington, D.C., and Boston recover first," said Victor Owens, vice president, Hotels.com North America. "We are now seeing the West Coast following suit as it shows about a 4 percent greater increase on average as a whole over the East Coast so far this year."

Price Increases in Major Coastal Cities

Comparing First Half of 2011 and 2012

West Coast

East Coast

City

State

YoY %

City

State

YoY %

Seattle

WA

5%

Boston

MA

7%

Portland

OR

5%

Providence

RI

3%

Honolulu

HI

17%

New York

NY

8%

Las Vegas

NV

7%

Philadelphia

PA

0%

Sacramento

CA

3%

Washington

D.C.

0%

San Francisco

CA

13%

Raleigh-Durham

NC

3%

Monterey

CA

10%

Atlanta

GA

2%

Santa Barbara

CA

15%

Jacksonville

FL

4%

Los Angeles

CA

5%

Orlando

FL

9%

San Diego

CA

6%

Miami

FL

8%

Average Percent


8.6%

Average Percent


4.4%

California

Known for its casual lifestyle, regular celebrity spottings, and abundance of sunshine and beaches, the Golden State saw hotel prices increase 7 percent in the first half of 2012. Seaside destinations such as Monterey and Santa Barbara, which boost numerous attractions including golf courses, wine tours, and a variety of other recreational activities, are seeing leisure travelers return to their streets. These towns saw prices rise 10 and 15 percent, respectively. San Diego, which currently has eight new hotels in its pipeline, saw a modest 6 percent increase and is a growing West Coast destination for both domestic and international travelers alike. The city overtook Chicago to become the fourth most popular domestic destination among Americans and the eighth most popular destination among international visitors to the States.

Hawaii

The Aloha State, which suffered a decline in visitors due to the recession and Japanese tsunami, is rebounding fast as the island greets increased Japanese and mainland U.S. leisure visitors. This tropical paradise saw prices increase 17 percent in the first half of 2012. Perhaps the large increase in hotel prices paid can be attributed to the island of Oahu where prices rose an unprecedented 70 percent. The state's capital Honolulu (on Oahu), which was the seventh most popular U.S. destination for foreign visitors, boasted a 17 percent increase in hotel prices. Neighboring islands, Maui and the Island of Hawaii (also known as the Big Island) saw moderate price increases of 5 and 9 percent, respectively. The island of Kauai witnessed price increases including the island's up-and-coming destinations of Lihue (up 16 percent) and Koloa (up 18 percent).

Increased Brazilian and Chinese Visitors

As the United States eases visa restrictions for Brazilian and Chinese visitors, the West Coast is starting to reap the benefits. Cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle are seeing an influx of Brazilian and Chinese visitors coming for business and leisure travel. With larger expendable incomes, emerging middle classes and rapidly growing economies, these foreign visitors are coming for business and tying in leisure travel during their stays. Brazilians and Chinese visitors are some of the largest spenders when they visit the U.S. especially when shopping retail. Many find that due to large import taxes in their home countries it's more affordable to come to the U.S. to shop and return home with these big purchases. San Francisco, a gateway to Northern California and a large economic and business hub, saw prices increase a substantial 13 percent. Los Angeles and Seattle also saw hotel prices increase 5 percent.

About the HPI®
The HPI tracks the real prices paid per room by hotels.com customers around the world using a weighted average based on the number of rooms sold in each of the markets that hotels.com operates. The index started in 2004, and includes all bookings across the almost 140,000 properties in over 60 countries that make up the sample set of hotels from which prices are taken.

About Hotels.com®
Hotels.com is a leading online accommodation booking brand. Through its global network of websites, Hotels.com, LP connects travelers with almost 155,000 properties around the world, ranging from international chains and all-inclusive resorts to local favorites and bed & breakfasts, together with all the information needed to book the perfect stay. Hotels.com, LP benefits from one of the largest hotel contracting teams in the industry, obtaining the best rates for its customers, and offers frequent sales, special deals and promotions. There are more than 6.5 million Guest Reviews on the websites from users who have actually stayed in the hotels to ensure customers can make an informed choice when booking. Through Hotels.com, LP's industry-leading loyalty program Welcome Rewards®, customers can earn a free night for every 10 nights stayed at more than 65,000 hotels. Under its Price Match Guarantee, if a customer can find the same deal for less on a prepaid hotel, Hotels.com, LP will refund the difference. Travelers can book online or by contacting one of the multilingual call centers. Special apps for mobile phones and tablets can also be downloaded at www.hotels.com/deals/mobile_app/ enabling customers to book on the go with access to 20,000 last minute deals. Hotels.com publishes an award-winning twice-yearly review of international hotel room price trends called the Hotels.com Hotel Price Index™, which is now produced in 31 individual country editions, with North American data available at www.hotel-price-index.com. Follow Hotels.com on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hotelsdotcom, on Twitter at www.twitter.com/hotelsdotcom and on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/user/hotelsdotcom. Hotels.com is part of Expedia, Inc., the largest online travel company in the world with an extensive portfolio that includes some of the world's best-known brands.

Hotels.com, Hotel Price Index, HPI, Finding You The Perfect Place and the Hotels.com logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Hotels.com, LP. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners. © 2012 Hotels.com, LP. All rights reserved. CST # 2083949-50

 
Contact:

Megan Tyrie – Finn Partners for Hotels.com
Phone: (212) 5935815
Email: MeganT@finnpartners.com

Taylor L. Cole
, APR
Hotels.com North America
Phone: (469) 335-8442
Email: taycole@hotels.com


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