*Updated December 21st, 2020
According to data published by World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), tourism industry accounted for 10.4% of the world’s GDP in 2019, making it one of the largest economic sectors worldwide. With 8.8 trillion US dollars, tourism establishes itself as one of the fastest-growing industries in the world. In recent months, the travel industry has been hit the hardest by the pandemic, also dragging down with it the short-term rental market.
Will the market be able to recover? What will tomorrow bring for vacation rentals?
It goes without saying, that predictions are hard to make. But with the available data, we can draw usable conclusions, prepare accordingly, and perhaps get that dose of optimism all of us seek.
Are you ready?
Please take a careful look at these statistics collected by Hosthub customers, from over 78 countries around the world, and several thousand properties.
New bookings per week worldwide (2019 vs 2020)
Through careful examination of the chart above one may observe the following:
- Since January 2020, there has been a marked decline in new bookings, which bottoms out in April, as we would expect, as this was the month with the most confirmed cases of Covid-19 around the world, with governments taking drastic measures to tackle the pandemic.
- Since mid-May, there has been a steady increase in bookings which reached almost 65% of last year’s bookings.
- 2019 new bookings show as steadily declining because many 2020 stays were booked during 2019 and have been cancelled in the meantime. The chart only shows non cancelled bookings, hence the decline.
Accumulated bookings per week worldwide (2019 vs 2020)
Looking at the accumulated bookings for both years, we observe a similar pattern. The differences between this year and the last year, peak in the months of quarantine (April to June), while both years display growing bookings during, and after, the summer months.
Ηowever the gap blows up since the beginning of October signalling the second wave of the pandemic.
Booking Window in days 2019 vs 2020
The main observation is that during the Covid-19 outbreak (March-May) the booking window increased sharply, reflecting the uncertainty that the guests were dealing with.
However, after the rebound that came in place after the mid of May, mainly due to the lift of the lockdown measures in many countries, we see the booking window being almost at the same levels as that of 2019. This suggests that guests feel safe to travel again and plan their vacations closer to their date of travel.
Interestingly while the second wave of the pandemic is materializing we still observe that the booking window remains almost at the same level as that of 2019.
Stats will be updated on a weekly basis.
To conclude, in 2020, the decline in vacation rentals was about 50% compared to 2019, which suggests the resilience of short term rentals compared to hotels that experienced a decline of 70% – 80% worldwide.