BTN Europe presents an overview of business travel and MICE predictions for this year
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Overpricing of hotel rooms during the Olympic period has led to a glut of accommodation being dumped on the market, with business travellers set to benefit.
Online portal HRS says rates currently found for the Olympic period are just under 25% more expensive than average, whereas those in Euro 2012 host cities were up to 181 per cent more expensive during the comparable period.
HRS chief executive Tobias Ragge said hotels had tried to offer rooms at “many times the normal rate”, but that with the start of the Games now only 10 days away there were “still numerous vacancies”.
HRS points to the capital’s greatly increased hotel capacity for the glut. Budget brands in particular have opened numerous properties this year, with around 60 from Premier Inn and Travelodge alone. HRS also blames the dire economic situation of countries like Spain and Portugal, which has meant many are reluctant to travel.
Data from more than 800 hotels in the London area gathered by HRS shows an average rate during the Games of £159. However, from August 13-28, the period between the Olympics and the Paralympics, rates plunge to £95, below last year’s average of £98. The August period is traditionally when little business travel is planned, with signs that this year will see even less until the end of the Paralympics on September 9.
Market intelligence provider TravelClick puts average rates during the Games at £189, a 70% increase year on year, but said rates and occupancies “were fluctuating” as the event gets closer.
TravelClick puts occupancy during the Games at 77%, an increase of more than 40% year on year, but with a slight decrease in price. TravelClick blames the dip in rates on the release of unsold rooms by Games organizer LOCOG.