ECONOMY

Hotel occupancy at just 30% this summer

hotel-occupancy-at-just-30-this-summer

Only six out of 10 hotels in Greece opened in July, August and September this year, and those that did open this summer recorded an occupancy rate of just 30%, according to research data published on Monday by the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels.

The highest occupancy rates were predictably recorded over the second week of August, approaching 50%. Yet even those units that did open this summer, including year-round businesses, have decided to close their doors again till at least the end of the year.

In 2019 there were 9,971 hotels that opened their doors to guests in Greece. About five out of six (84%) intended to reopen in June after the lockdown, however, only four out of six (67%) ended up applying for the health certificate to open. Eventually just 60% of them – around 6,000 units – actually took in guests this summer: They were 2,328 year-round hotels and 3,700 seasonal units, according to the survey the chamber commissioned from the Institute for Tourism Research and Forecasts (ITEP).

The survey found that the average occupancy rate for the entire set of Greek hotels – i.e. the 9,971 units that opened last year – came to just 23.1% for the months of July, August and September.

In response to a question from Kathimerini, the chamber’s president Alexandros Vassilikos estimated that this amounts to an occupancy of about 30% for the hotels that did open during the summer. The average cost per overnight stay for the same period came to 86 euros per room.

What best illustrates the difficulty of the months ahead, the chamber noted, is that 717 year-round hotels that reopened during the summer will shut down again this year, therefore 31% of this market will not even try to complete a full financial year.

There was also a 4.5% share of seasonal hotels that did reopen after the spring lockdown but decided to close again in July or in August. The majority (50.9%) closed in September and another 40.6% will close within October, leaving just 4% open for the winter.