NYC hotel and tourism business has long road to recovery

 Friday, April 22, 2022 


New York’s world-renowned hotel and tourism industry has a steep climb to bounce back to its pre-pandemic glory days — with hotel business travel revenue expected to be 55% lower in the Big Apple market this year than in 2019, a sobering new industry analysis reveals.

The report by the American Hotel & Lodging Association and Kalibri Labs says hotel business travel revenue across the US in 2022 is projected to be 23% below pre-pandemic levels, ending the year down more than $20 billion compared to 2019.

These projections come after hotels lost an estimated $108 billion in business travel revenue during 2020 and 2021 combined.

But the New York hotel business travel industry is suffering the most of any market in the country — with the exception of San Francisco, where hotel business travel is expected to be 68% lower than in 2019, the report said.

Other urban hotel-tourism markets still suffering from the COVID-19 blues include Washington, DC, where business is projected to be 54% lower, Chicago 49%, Boston 47% and New Orleans 32% below 2019 levels.

The New York state hotel business travel market as a whole is also a laggard, with revenue expected to be 46% lower than 2019.

That’s the second-worst recovery of any state other than Wyoming, where revenue will be 63% behind 2019, according to the survey.

While dwindling COVID-19 case counts and relaxed CDC guidelines are providing a sense of optimism for reigniting travel, this report underscores how tough it will be for many hotels and hotel employees to recover from years of lost revenue, said Chip Rogers, president and CEO of AHLA.

The good news is that after two years of virtual work arrangements, Americans recognize the unmatched value of face-to-face meetings and say they are ready to start getting back on the road for business travel.

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