Summer Lodging Numbers Down But Rates Are Up
Western mountain resorts enjoyed a slight 1.3% bump up in year-over-year occupancy in October compared to the same month last year. Even better, resorts saw a 20% increase in average daily rate of lodging properties.
That 20% rise in the average daily rate for October pushed total revenues up nearly 22% percent for the month, according to the DestiMetrics Market Briefing from Inntopia. This is the first month since the pandemic started that monthly lodging showed a year-over-year increase in either occupancy or revenue.
The briefing is based on data from 18 mountain destinations in seven Western states, including Park City, and encompasses more than 30,000 rooms through Oct. 31st.
The briefing reports that for the full summer season, occupancy was down more than 31% percent while average daily rate rose a solid 7.6%. Revenues finished down about 26%.
In a statement from Tom Foley, Senior Vice President for Business Operations and Analytics for Inntopia, consumers are more comfortable with short-lead bookings, and that willingness for visitors to book on short notice has allowed lodging properties to fill openings and improve their occupancy figures.
The booking pace during October for arrivals in the months from October through March reflect the continued cautiousness of mountain visitors to make long-lead travel plans. October bookings for arrival in the same month were up 36% and for November arrivals, up 10%. October bookings for the remaining four months were down, though, and for the six-month winter season, bookings were down just more than 12%.
For the winter as a whole, arrivals in November through April are down 33% with decreases in all six months. The average daily rate is down a moderate 2% compared to this time last year with increases in four of the six months.
Foley said until winter guests see abundant snowfall, meaningful progress in the fight against COVID-19, a stabilized political climate, and a recovering economy, “we’re going to need a healthy dose of good luck and good faith efforts to tackle this season’s challenges.”