The vast majority of delegates at the recent Deloitte hotels investment conference predicted that the good times for the industry would continue in 2007.
85% of the delegates, mostly hotel operators and investors, said the revenue per available room (revPAR) would continue to rise next year in the UK while 50% thought it would also go on rising in Germany.
The delegates thought the best regions for future investment in hotels were Eastern Europe (32%), Western Europe (28%) and Asia (27%) but found the Middle East (8%) and the USA (5%) less attractive.
The reasons given were strong economic growth and high demand.
Nearly a third of the delegates though that the mid-market hotels would be squeezed by the luxury properties on one side and by the budget ones on the other.
More than half (52%) said that the budget market in the UK was already nearly saturated.
Most delegates thought there would be a measure of consolidation in the hotel industry over the next five years.
In the UK, 11% thought there would be no listed hotel companies in five years time while 29% said there would be three and 39% five. 21% said there would be ten or more.
The company most likely to be acquired was InterContinental (46%) while the least likely was Hilton (7%).
LCCs have little impact on traffic growth – CAA
A report by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has found that no frills carriers have had "little impact on overall rates of traffic growth."
The report also said that, contrary to popular belief, there was little evidence of marked change in the profile of air passengers since the rise in low cost carriers (LCCs).
But the report did find that no frills carriers had “revolutionised” the short haul market, radically changed fares and passengers' choice of airlines, airports and destinations.
The CAA said that liberalisation of the European aviation market in 1993 has propelled the success of the LCCs.
Nearly half of UK short haul travellers now used LCCs. They were also travelling to a wider range of destinations, particularly in Eastern Europe.
Dr Harry Bush, the CAA's group director, economic regulation, said: "The emergence of no-frills airlines and the response of other airlines to this have benefited passengers generally, and have demonstrated the advantages of opening aviation markets to competition."
On the profile of passengers, Dr Bush said: "The no frills' main effect has been to provide further opportunities to those in middle and higher income groups to fly more often."
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