[photopress:hotels_beijing_hotel_1.jpg,full,alignright]An official said reports of Beijing hotels ramping up prices for next year’s Olympic Games are based on a misunderstanding of Chinese negotiating techniques.
Local media reports in the first half of this year said hotels in the Chinese capital were charging up to 10 times their usual rates for next August.
Penny Xiang, deputy director of Games Services for Beijing Organising Committee (BOCOG) said, ‘It is a game between the hotel owners and the market. The reason is that there were many enquiries at that time, which released a signal that the market demand was extremely high.’
Penny Xiang said the exorbitant rates are mainly a sales strategy of the hotels and reasonable deals were available if buyers kept haggling.
She said, ‘As far as I know there are not many hotels that have actually signed contracts with clients, and those that have signed contracts are actually not at very high price.
‘The Chinese way of dealing with something we’re not sure about is to wait and see, especially when many hotel owners thought they could get a better price next year.’
But city officials and Olympics organizers contributed to the rush for hotel rooms earlier this year by urging visitors to book early in order to guarantee a room.
Penny Xiang said the Organising Committee had already booked 70% or more of the rooms in 122 top-ranked hotels closest to the Olympics venues. Those rooms are reserved for visiting Olympics officials, sponsoring companies and the media.
For all of the remaining hotel rooms Penny Xiang said that she was confident the market would settle down closer to the time the Games begin.
She said, ‘When the demand and supply reach a balance, it will not be possible to keep demanding such high prices.’
Beijing is expecting 500,000 foreign visitors and more than a million domestic tourists in a daily flow of about 280,000 during the Games.
Source: Washington Post