Hotel bookings in Europe exceed pre-Covid levels

European corporate hotel bookings surpassed pre-pandemic levels in June as recovery accelerated over the past two months.

The latest quarterly figure from HotelHub, which provides booking technology for TMCs and their customers, found that European hotel bookings in June reached 108 per cent of 2019 volumes – this is up from at 80 percent of pre-Covid levels in April.

Worldwide, the HotelHub index for the second quarter of 2022 showed that hotel bookings in June were at 120 percent of June 2019 levels.

The growth of international business travel from Europe has also “continued” back to pre-Covid levels. The share of international hotel bookings in Europe accounted for 41 per cent of all transactions at the end of June – just three per cent less than the 2019 figure of 44 per cent.

Average daily rates in major European cities, such as London and Paris, have also risen monthly. Prices in London in June exceeded the same month three years ago, while rates in Paris were also rapidly approaching pre-pandemic levels.

London’s average daily rate was $ 313 (£ 263) in June, up from $ 238 (£ 200) at the start of 2022 and an increase to the average $ 287 (£ 241) recorded in 2019. Meanwhile the rates in Paris in June reached $ 231 (€ 230), just below the 2019 average of $ 246 (€ 245).

Eric Meierhans, HotelHub’s chief commercial officer, said: “We’ve seen a significant increase in global hotel transactions made by our TMC customers over the past two months, which means that volumes have exceeded now at pre-pandemic levels.

“This is very positive news for the hotel sector and business travel in general. It is also very encouraging to see that international travel in Europe is now almost back to the same level in 2019.

“However, the US is a slightly different picture – as international travel increased, this growth slowed in May and June, possibly due to the war in Ukraine that caused continued uncertainty.”

Meierhans added that bookings through online booking tools (OBTs) had a “huge rise” in the second quarter, which was “contrary to our expectations”.

“We expect that corporations will need the support and advice of their TMC to book hotels offline as they navigate return to travel and ongoing flight disruptions,” he said.

“Perhaps current TMC staff shortages and service issues are driving companies toward greater use of their online booking tool.”