Duetto Pulse: Mixed picture for European hotels a year on from continent’s first lockdown

Duetto Pulse: Mixed picture for European hotels a year on from continent’s first lockdown

Revenue strategy specialist says confidence among consumers is increasing as COVID cases fall

The latest edition of the Duetto Pulse Report reveals the current trends in the hotel search and booking market for February

Hotel performance for February shows a mixed bag when it comes to booking activity and web traffic across Europe over the last month.

Ongoing and successful COVID vaccination roll-outs across the region and the number of infection cases coming down in some countries mean that pick up is up in several markets.

However, some countries are actually seeing COVID cases rise again, which is of course being reflected in the data.

This week marks a year since Italy went into lockdown, the first European country to do so.

Twelve months on and although Europe is still under various levels of lockdown and strict border controls remain in force, there is definitely room for cautious optimism.

Germany, UK, Spain and Portugal have seen COVID-19 infections drop and subsequently restrictions are beginning to ease.

Plus, on February 22, 2021 the UK’s government announced international travel is to be permitted as of the end of May 2021.

Happily, the data is reflecting a response to this and shows rising confidence in the consumer as they look towards the latter part of the year with optimism.

Compared to January 2021, February 2021 data saw some positive increases in terms of pick up for the region as a whole, for every stay month until September 2021 (with the exception of June).

There were significant increases of 232%, 1741%, and 97% for February, March and April 2021 respectively.

In the UK, following months of strict lockdown and positive news about the number of vaccines being distributed, this market has now turned a corner, driven by the domestic sector.

In the short-term, the Pulse Report shows an increase in bookings of 481% and 884% for February and March respectively and there is some strong activity for the summer months.

Similarly, the data also shows strong short-term pick up for the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) as activity reactivates.

However, in contrast with the UK, this is completely focused on the upcoming weeks.

The pick up for DACH in February was 107% and 476% for stay months February and March respectively, while compared with the January Pulse Report pick up for the summer months was actually negative.

In terms of web shopping, DACH saw larger increases in web searches than the UK for the upcoming weeks and months.

For example, for the stay month of March, the UK saw web searches increase by 36% whereas DACH experienced a 102% rise.

However, when looking ahead at the summer months, the story changes. The UK saw an 102%, 89% and 94% increase in web searches, whilst the DACH region experienced the highest increase in web searches over the last month.

Starting from March, not a single month saw an increase below 70% compared to December 2020.

Similarly to 2020, domestic travel is expected to be a key driver in demand for these markets during the summer months so it is worth highlighting the 86%, 101% and 87% increase for the months of July, August and September, which is well above the other regions.

Juan Ruano, Duetto’s Director of Hospitality Solutions for the EMEA region, said:

“We have seen lots of booking activity being resumed, particularly over the last ten days.

“COVID cases are generally more under control and vaccination plans are being rolled out at different speeds across the region.

“Thanks to this, hotels are starting to be allowed to reopen and therefore consumer confidence is increasing.”

The Duetto Pulse Report is a monthly report available for free to hoteliers from around the world. It tracks key metrics for North America, Latin America, EMEA and APAC. Subscribe here: https://www.duettocloud.com/pulse-signup