A Year Later, the Hotel Industry Recalibrates, Reassesses

Just over a year after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic, the global hotel industry is—slowly—stirring from hibernation and seeing at least modest gains in traveler demand. The wait has been long, and it remains a work in progress. But making headway is all you can ask for after a 12-month headache.

In the U.S., which saw performance calve last March, before bottoming out in April, small gains continued to be made in most key performance indicators in March 2021—though the strides only shined a light on the decrepitude that was 2020.

Consider gross operating profit per available room, which was up 328.9% from the same time last year to $30.63. The steep increase more a result of the depths from which it has come: GOPPAR in March 2020 checked in at $-13.38, one of eight months in 2020 when profit was negative. Still, March 2021 GOPPAR was the highest it’s been since February of last year and $20 higher than last month.

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