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Hotel Rates to Stay Low Until 2012

Hotel Rates to Stay Low Until 2012

They may not be <i>this</i> low, but hotel prices sure are cheap right now!

Barbara De Lollis | USA Today

Exactly how good are the hotel discounts these day?

Really good. In fact, a Bloomberg report says that hotels are cutting rates so deeply to encourage customers to walk through their doors that it may take four years to raise them back to 2008 levels.

“We don’t see national average ”">room rates getting back to 2008 levels until sometime in 2012 or even 2013,” Mark Woodworth, president of PKF Hospitality Research, told Bloomberg. “There were rate declines in 2001 and 2002, but until this year that was the only other time that happened in this industry in some 20 plus years.”

Even InterContinental Hotels Group – dominated by the mid-priced Holiday Inn chain – last month reported that first quarter net income plunged 56% on lower room rates, Bloomberg said.

“We have described the current situation as near-panic rate cutting,” David Loeb, an analyst at Robert W. Baird & Co. told Bloomberg. “We’ve seen give-aways and packages, all apparently designed to stimulate traffic.”

The average daily rate in the USA fell to $97 in May, a nearly 10% drop vs. May 2008, the story says. PKF expects hotels to fill about 55% of their rooms this year, vs. a record 65% in 1995, Bloomberg notes.

Readers: Are you surprised lately by the rates you’re seeing this year for hotels that stayed in last year? Give us some specifics.

Related Reads:
The Best Business Travel Websites
Planning a Trip for Your Boss: The Checklist
9 Ways to Save on Rental Cars

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