Consumer sentiment low as UK nears reopening
Consumer sentiment low as UK nears reopening
29 JUNE 2020 8:46 AM

Hotel metrics have been predictably dismal as the U.K. has remained closed, and there has been a downward shift in expectations for international travel across all age ranges.

LONDON—As the United Kingdom grows nearer to reopening on 4 July, consumers in that nation are feeling less willing to travel internationally, according to data from STR’s Consumer Travel Insights Survey.

(STR is the parent company of Hotel News Now.)

Speaking during a video overview of U.K. and European hotel performance for the week ending 21 June, STR director Thomas Emanuel said in key English-speaking markets, consumers’ intent to travel internationally took a hit across all age ranges. The same was true when looking only at U.K. consumers.

“There is a sense that all U.K. consumers of all ages were equally impacted by initial negative consequences of COVID-19 in March,” he said.

Each of the represented age groups—16 to 34, 35 to 54 and 55 and up—saw declines in the number of U.K. consumers intending to have as many or the same number of international leisure trips as they did in 2019.

Of those surveyed after 11 March (when the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a pandemic), 42% of those between 16- and 34-years old plan to travel internationally less, compared to just 28% prior to 11 March. That number similarly jumped up for those 35 to 54 (from 18% to 38%) and those 55 and over (from 24% to 40%).

While U.K. hotel revenue per available room declined year-over-year between 82% to 90% over the last week, there is hope as the country draws closer to the 4 July reopening, Emanuel said.

In addition to spurring some level of domestic roomnight demand, the nearing of the reopening date also seems to be inducing new development, he said.

“The majority of these applications are in the economy sector, which is unsurprising when looking at the data we’ve seen since the pandemic but also in looking at recovery patterns, which in other countries such as China and the U.S., have been strongest in that sector,” he said.

For more of Emanuel’s insights into U.K. performance data, please watch the video below:

Editor’s note: The video included in this article was filmed Thomas Emanuel, director at STR, on 24 June and edited and produced by CoStar Group. HNN is a division of STR, a CoStar Group company.

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