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August 2016: Europe between sunbath and sandbar

The summer season 2016 comes to an end with a month of August characterized by an increase in the difference between trends that range from one extreme to the next depending on the destination. The leading countries are consolidating their leadership while others get bogged down despite themselves. Since the beginning of the year the global trend in Europe holds its course toward stability.

Throughout the European continent the Revenue per available room (RevPAR) is down by 2.8% with respect to the same period last year. Average daily rates up slightly by 0.4% have not made it possible to make up for the 2.4 point drop in occupancy rate. This month all hotel categories -including budget categories- reported occupancy rates down. The segment that was most affected remains the upscale, with a RevPAR down by 4.5% due to a 2.4 point drop in occupancy rate.

August 2016: Monthly results of hotel chains by category

August 2016 strengthens the trend established in recent months, but with a few developments nonetheless. Compared to August 2015, two countries post a RevPAR showing double-digit growth: Spain, which has been in the lead with a RevPAR up 14.0%, and Poland (+12.1%). Greece (+5.9%) and Portugal (+8.8%) have also had a good summer season. This dynamic may be explained particularly by the improvement in their internal economic context and by the shift of some clientèle from destinations affected by the attacks. The British hotel sector appears to support the effects of Brexit without difficulty (RevPAR: +3.4%), with the drop in the pound sterling being favorable to leisure clientele (predominant in August) who come for shopping. On the other hand, several countries, including some heavyweights, have seen a significant drop in their indexes: Germany (-4.0%), Italy (-4.3%), Luxembourg (-3.2%) and Austria (-2.6%). It should be observed that these countries have maintained positive growth since the beginning of the year (by respectively 3.0%, 1.7%, 7.0% and 0.9%). Italy is in a specific context: to its economic and political uncertainties may be added an unfavorable comparison to a very busy events calendar 2015 (Milan Universal Exposition + Venice Biennale), which should continue to pull results down in the months to come.

France and Belgium continue to suffer due to the difficult security context. Compared to the same period last year, Belgium's hotel indicators have dropped once again, with a RevPAR down 20.2%, which may be explained by a strong drop in its occupancy rate (-15.5 points). France, touched by new attacks in Nice in mid-July, follows the same dynamic with a 13.4% drop in the RevPAR which may be explained by a combined drop in its occupancy rate (-5.1 points) and its average daily rate (-6.7%).

On the first eight months of the year, Belgium and France thus registered respective drops in their RevPARs by 13.7% and 5.3%. Inversely, the best hotel results come from Spain (RevPAR: +14.8%) and Poland (RevPAR: +11.7%). More generally speaking, the rest of the European countries, with exception to Italy, post a relatively positive dynamic. On the whole, the European markets pursue their trend towards stability with a RevPAR up slightly by 0.7%, driven by a 1.1% increase in average daily rates over the same period last year.

Also read:

  • June 2016: weak growth for Europe’s hotel industry
  • July 2016: Europe's hotel industry is on the fence
  • July: France's hotel industry continues its course...

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