Spanish hotel bookings back to pre-pandemic levels

SiteMinder Word Hotel IndexThe volume of hotel bookings in Spain has returned to the same levels of two years ago, according to data collected from the SiteMinder World Hotel Index on June 28, 2021.

Following the expiration of the national state of emergency and ban on leisure travel in early May, there was a rapid bounce back in hotel bookings, rising from 57% on May 1 to 87% on June 1 in comparison to the same time periods in 2019. As of today, overall hotel booking volumes in Spain have exceeded 100% of their 2019 levels, with smaller cities experiencing the strongest demand.

According to SiteMinder, the world’s largest open hotel commerce platform, Malaga and Valencia are among the cities with the fastest bounce back, respectively recording 111% and 105% of the volume of hotel bookings in comparison to two years prior. Larger cities, including Sevilla, Barcelona and Madrid, are not yet at pre-pandemic volumes, respectively at 94%, 80%, and 69% of 2019 levels, reflecting an ongoing global trend of travellers opting for holidays outside of major metropolitan areas. Across Europe, four of these Spanish cities rank among the top 10 cities for hotel booking momentum. Currently, the global average for hotel bookings is at 67% of pre-pandemic levels.

The data also points to positive signs that international travel is making a comeback. Since March of this year, the percentage of international visitors in comparison to domestic visitors in Spain has consistently grown. In March, international travellers made up 28% of all hotel arrivals in Spain, which increased to 31% in April and 35% in May. As at today, the proportion of international guests is set to exceed 60% of hotel arrivals by September.

Spain overtakes Portugal in hotel booking volume recovery

Both Spain and Portugal have shown strong recoveries in hotel booking volumes in recent months. While Portugal saw a significant spike in volumes on May 13, reaching 93% while Spain was at 76% of hotel booking volumes in comparison to two years prior, there was a cross-over on June 2 whereby Spain’s speed of recovery overtook the pace of Portugal’s. Currently, Portugal is sitting at 76% of 2019 booking volumes, while Spain is at 102%.

Though there are promising signs, not all countries in the region are recovering at the same rate as Spain. In addition to Portugal, among the next in line are Ireland and the UK, which are currently at hotel booking volumes of 91% and 74% of those of the same time period in 2019.

“While the pandemic is far from over and every market across Europe is managing the impacts of travel restrictions and the vaccine rollout uniquely, it is very promising to see Spain’s hotel bookings return to pre-pandemic levels as Spaniards and international travellers are excitedly booking holidays and visits across the country,” says Sara Padrosa, Country Manager for Spain at SiteMinder.

“There have been a range of short-term and long-term changes to traveller preferences and behaviours, and hoteliers need to keep in mind how these will continue to change in the coming months and years,” continues Padrosa. “This bounce back is a positive sign of how these changes are impacting the industry to redefine what travel looks like in Spain and across the region, without shrinking the market. It’s an exciting space to watch, and we’re pleased to see our hoteliers back at doing what they do best – greeting guests and delighting customers.”

For more information, visit siteminder.com/world-hotel-index.

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