The hotel industry in mainland China has seen a steady recovery over the past three quarters, thanks to a post-pandemic boom in leisure travel that fuelled demand for hotels and pushed up room rates, reports the South China Morning Post. The occupancy rate across the country reached 68.4% in the first nine months of 2023, only 2% short of 2019 levels, according to analysts at JLL, a real estate services company.
Occupancy even reached a record 83.1% on October 2 during the eight-day “golden week” holiday, with most of the growth coming from lower-tier cities, which saw an influx of domestic tourists, according to a report published on October 19 by STR, a hotel analytics provider.
“The surge in occupancy was driven by the release of pent-up demand for leisure travel after the pandemic,” Flora Zhu, director of China Corporate Research at Fitch Ratings, wrote in a note. “There was also an uptick in business travel shortly after the Chinese new year, but it gradually phased out due to a slowing economy, which also made companies cut their budgets for business trips.”