U.S. hotel owners are bracing for another quarter of sluggish business travel, hoping that this year’s surge in leisure travel can carry over into the fall and holiday season.
Overall, the strength of leisure travel looks unlikely to offset the falloff in corporate business and group travel this year. Hotel data and analytics firm STR is projecting that about 1 billion U.S. hotel rooms will be booked this year, up from 829 million in 2020, but still below the record year of 2019, when guests booked 1.3 billion rooms.
Hotel business-travel revenue for the year is expected to fall more than $59 billion compared with 2019, according to a report released last month by the American Hotel & Lodging Association.
That is even a greater drop than 2020, when nearly $49 billion in revenue was lost, the report said. “We’re on a downward slope for the end of the year,” said