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  • Bob Brooks

Hotel Industry is in "Crisis"

"Thousands of hotels are in jeopardy of closing forever, and that will have a ripple effect throughout our communities for years to come." Chip Rogers, president and CEO of AHLA (American Hotel & Lodging Association)

I interviewed Chip Rogers on the radio show on the state of the hotel industry a few months back, and things looked bleak. Fast forward to today, and things look worst with nothing in the way of a bailout from Congress beyond the paycheck protection program. The AHLA just sent out a new report, and it is just sad to see what is happening to the hotel industry via COVID-19.

Here are some highlights of the report.

  • Only 33% of Americans say they have traveled overnight for leisure or vacation since March, and only 38% say they are likely to do so by the end of the year.

  • Just 16% of Americans plan to travel for Labor Day, 25% for Thanksgiving, and 29% for Christmas.

  • Only 14% of hotel rooms are booked for this upcoming Labor Day weekend, compared to 41% a year ago.

  • Nationally, five out of ten hotel rooms are empty. Occupancy is just 38% in urban markets and 45% in hotels near airports.

  • Four out of ten hotel employees are still not working.

Additional findings:

  • Four out of 10 hotel employees are still not working.

  • Almost two-thirds (65%) of hotels remain at or below 50 percent occupancy, which is below the threshold at which most hotels can break even and pay debt.

  • Consumer travel remains at an all-time low, with only 33 percent of Americans reporting they have traveled overnight for leisure or vacation since March and just 38 percent saying they are likely to travel by the end of the year.

  • Urban hotels suffer the most and face collapse with cripplingly low occupancies of 38 percent, significantly below the national average.

  • COVID-19 has left hotels in major cities across the country struggling to stay in business, resulting in massive job loss and dramatically reducing state and local tax revenue for 2020 and beyond.

That is just one industry out of many who are feeling the pain of COVID-19. They are desperately seeking relief from Congress. The damage is starting to reveal itself as any stimulus from Congress starts to wear off. I wonder how things will look by the end of the year? It is a sad situation in America that changes the landscape.

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