Our figure of the month 08/2020: Abrupt end of the boom in the accommodation sector due to Corona


Large cities particularly hard hit, holiday regions profit from preferred German holidays

The accommodation industry in Germany is one of the sectors most affected by the corona pandemic. The ten-year dynamic growth phase is thus coming to an abrupt end. In 2019, the industry as a whole set new records for overnight stays, with a total of around 500 million overnight stays and a 3.7% increase within one year and a 17% increase within the last five years (2014–2019). Over a fifth of overnight stays in 2019 were accounted for by guests from abroad.

The reasons for the decline are, on the one hand, the approximately eight-week closure of all establishments for tourism from mid-March to mid-May and, on the other hand, the high hygiene and safety requirements following the reopening of hotels, restaurants, guesthouses, holiday apartments and -houses and campsites – which is scheduled differently for each federal state. Until a vaccine is available, the regionally varying but everywhere limited occupancy rate of 50 to 80% in the hotel industry is likely to persist. With a sales share of approx. 90%, the hotel industry dominates total sales in the accommodation sector.

On the other hand, the consumer climate in Germany, which is important for the industry, has collapsed due to the pandemic. Combined with increased job insecurity and health concerns, this has considerably restricted consumers' desire to travel. Due to the cancellation of almost all trade fairs, congresses and business meetings until well into autumn 2020 and the financially strained situation of almost all companies, the number of business trips has also fallen drastically. Before Corona, about one quarter of overnight stays were accounted for by business travellers.

As can be seen in the chart, the total number of overnight stays in Germany from January to May 2020 has almost halved to -49% compared to the same period last year. In view of the fact that entry and exit restrictions continue to apply worldwide in both the tourism and business travel sectors, the share of foreign travellers (-56%) is much more affected than domestic demand.

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