By Mike Ford, Founder at SiteMinder
With 2022 racing to July, I wanted to take the chance to reflect on the first six months of the year so far, and provide a holistic pulse check on the world of accommodation. Below are my five mid-year findings from SiteMinder’s World Hotel Index.
1. Booking momentum remains stable above 90% globally
Firstly, I’ll highlight that recent months have been a period of stability on the World Hotel Index from a global viewpoint. Hotel booking momentum has been positioned between 90% and 100% of 2019 levels for over 60 days now, stretching above pre-pandemic levels for just one day in that time (due to the changing dates of the Easter period, versus 2019).
Today, in keeping with this trend, the number of reservations being made by travellers around the world is 96% of what it was at this same time in 2019.
2. Almost twice as many countries are seeing bookings above 75% of 2019 levels than in January this year
Looking to the start of the year displays just how much has changed for the world’s hoteliers in the last six months. On the 1st of January, just 43% of the 42 countries on SiteMinder’s World Hotel Index were sitting at above 75% of their respective 2019 levels. Today, 83% of countries are above 75% of their pre-pandemic levels, and just seven countries on the World Hotel Index are not.
3. Three countries lead their regions in booking momentum
Region-by-region, the Cook Islands lead momentum in the APAC region at 124% of 2019 levels, after all travel restrictions were lifted in May. Mexico leads the Americas at 118% of 2019 levels, and has now been above its relative 2019 booking volume for over 300 days. And at 118% of 2019 levels, Portugal is the frontrunner in EMEA, with 75% of bookings to Portugal’s hotels coming from international travellers.
4. Highest number of last-minute bookings in Macau
Macau is currently the region with the highest percentage of last-minute bookings on the World Hotel Index. Of all the reservations made there in the last two weeks, over 80% have been for stays in June and July.
On the flip side, the travellers currently booking accommodation for stays on the Cook Islands are the most well planned on earth. Of all of the bookings made to the Cook Islands in the last two weeks, less than 20% have been for June or July.
5. One country has had a steeper return of bookings than the rest
Finally (and pleasingly), the steepest return of bookings that’s taken place in the last six months has come from Vanuatu, which is reopening to international travel today for the first time since March 2020. On January 1, booking volumes for future stays were less than 3% of 2019 levels, but today they are already above 50% as holidaymakers plan trips, an increase of over 1800%.
With this positive trajectory, I keenly await what the second half of the year holds. As usual, I will be back next month to monitor all of the major trends found in the World Hotel Index. Until then, take care.