Group and Business Travel Show Steady Recovery for Fourth Quarter, Says Amadeus
Positive trends indicate consistent consumer confidence, according to research >>
by: Harvey Chipkin
Group and business travel are showing steady recovery for the fourth quarter of this year, with 4.3 million group room nights already booked for the first half of 2023, according to new research from Amadeus. The technology company said its Agency360 and Demand360 data sources are showing strong recovery indicators for the remainder of 2022 and evidence of growing traveler confidence as the sector looks towards 2023. Amadeus’ Demand360 business intelligence data, which offers both retrospective and forward-looking insights to inform revenue strategy, reveals that global hotel occupancy has exceeded pre-pandemic levels consistently throughout the summer. For July and August 2022, hotels have seen a global occupancy average of 67% compared with an average of 64% over the same time frame in 2019 — a 3% increase from three years ago. These positive trends, said the report, indicate consistent consumer confidence when it comes to booking travel for future stay dates, laying excellent foundations for a strong fourth quarter, where on-the-books data is already outpacing 2019 bookings. Mirroring the recovery of occupancy rates is the stabilization of booking lead times. 2022 now virtually matches the booking behaviors seen in 2019, with 53% of bookings made in the 0-7 day window, versus 50% of bookings made in this time frame in 2019. As the booking lead time improves, this implies increasing traveler confidence as people make longer-term commitments. Average Daily Rates (ADR) also continue to trend positively for the fall season, exceeding 2019 for the remainder of 2022 and, as usual, peaking around the Thanksgiving holiday (US) and Christmas.
Business travel is also seeing a steady recovery as the year continues. 2022 is closing the gap to 2019 levels, according to Amadeus’ Agency360 data, which reveals that hotel bookings across all major global distribution systems (GDS) have increased 98% in August 2022 compared with January 2022. At the start of this year, hotel booking volumes fell behind 2019 performance by 62%, but this gap has progressively closed over 2022, with global hotel booking volumes in August finishing 23% behind 2019 levels.