A year ago, the Spanish hotel sector could only hope for better times. Now a full recovery is underway and as many hotel rooms have been booked as in June 2019. The recovery elsewhere in Europe is not as convincing as in Spain.
This is apparent from data from the mediation platform SiteMinder, to which 35,000 hotels are affiliated worldwide. From the end of the state of alert on 9 May, the number of bookings increased rapidly. On May 1, hotel bookings reached 57% of June 2019’s level. By June 1, this percentage rose to 87%.
Rather beach than city
According to Siteminder, the recovery in Spain is not the same everywhere. For example, this year tourists are opting for coastal areas rather than the large Spanish cities. The most popular are hotels in the cities of Malaga and Valencia, which registered 112% and 103% respectively of the number of bookings in June 2019. In Seville, Barcelona and Madrid, on the other hand, the recovery is not yet complete, though with positive figures of 94%, 80% and 71% respectively.
Using June 2019 as the base level data, at a European level, hotel bookings reached 67%. Spain is at the forefront of the European recovery, with 102% of hotel bookings made nationally last month. That is considerably more than in countries such as Ireland (92%), Portugal (76%) or England (72%).
Current figures not yet a reliable indicator
Despite the prosperous development of the Spanish hotel sector, experts agree it is not a reliable indicator of the sector’s economic situation. The difference between now and 2019 is virtually all hotel chains have relaxed their cancellation policies. Many hotels have free cancellation policies as a result of pendemic situation. This encourages visitors to book. However, the true figures will not be available until after the season is over.
Also, it should not be overlooked that a significant number of hotels in Spain are closed. In June 2019, Spain had 17,000 hotels open. In May, there were only 10,464 according to the statistics agency INE.