If 2020 and 2021 were a test of the industry’s mettle, then 2022 will
be the year that the hospitality sector proves its ability to recover
stronger than ever, according to hospitality analytics firm STR.
“We feel that many markets will return back to normal by the end of
2022,” Jesper Palmqvist, area director of Asia Pacific at STR shares.
“There are more markets that we thought last year that actually would be
able to do it, and the reasons for that would be that markets are in a
better place now with vaccinations, and that governments are now more
progressive and faster in changing decisions.”
With hotel rates, STR forecasts that the luxury segment will continue
driving the pricing momentum. And while cost inflation may present a
challenge, it could be offset with Average Daily Rate (ADR) growth and
implementing efficiencies in hotel management.
Palmqvist says that in terms of leisure travel, a sustainable way of
reducing restrictions will drive its growth, while when it comes to
business travel, based on current economic recovery, the demand is
expected to be stronger.
Occupancy rates are picking up across multiple destinations
Matthew Burke, regional manager, Pacific of STR references the travel
demand in Australia which rose back up to 2019 levels towards the end
of January 2022. “Regardless of where the demand is going to end up,
there’s an appetite to travel, and people want to travel, and people are
prepared to pay for it,” Burke says.
Towards end-2021, STR also notes an increase in occupancy rates for
Bali, Langkawi, Cebu Area, Phuket and Phu Quoc. However, compared to
2020, Bali’s occupancy rate dipped in 2021, while other areas grew
substantially following the Delta variant in the previous year.
Palmqvist believes that this could be due to Bali’s strong reliance on
“The more domestic orientation you have, the better the recovery is,”
Burke shares his views derived from a study conducted by Tourism
Economics which showed that domestic demand for travel correlates with
Destinations also have a thing or two to learn from Maldives’
reopening in July 2020, opines Burke. Maldives was one of the first few
countries to reopen during the pandemic with several restrictions in
place, and those restrictions have been mostly lifted in current times.
We feel that many markets will return back to normal by the end of 2022.
the longer lead time that Maldives had above other destinations with
its reopening and the country offering a chance for “Europeans to get
out of their restricted areas or the cold” in end-2021, Burke noted that
“Maldives is one of the highest average rate destinations we track
around the world, and is one of the few destinations we can say that
consistently outperforms 2019 levels through the last three months’