A new survey commissioned by the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and conducted by Morning Consult revealed that 60% of Americans report being more likely to stay in hotels this year than in 2022 and hotels are the top lodging choice among those planning to travel for business and leisure in the next three months.
About 52% of adults would stay in hotels if they had to travel overnight for leisure in the next three months, while 76% of prospective business travelers are likely to stay in a hotel if they travel for work in the same period, the survey said.
In an encouraging sign, nearly 70% of their employers have either returned to the pre-pandemic normal or increased amounts of business travel—a propitious sign for an industry where a vast amount of revenue is generated from corporate business.
- 51% of business travelers said the share of employees expected or encouraged to travel for work is now the same as before the pandemic, while another 20% said it’s more than before.
- 53% of business travelers said the average length of business trips is now the same as before the pandemic, while another 20% said it’s more than before.
- 52% of business travelers said the amount of business trips expected or supported by their employer is now the same as before the pandemic, while another 20% said it’s more than before.
- 52% of business travelers said the amount of spending their employer will cover on business trips is now the same as before the pandemic, while another 18% said it’s more than before.
According to the survey, AHLA’s Hotel Booking Index (HBI) for the next three months is 7.1, which is very good. The HBI is a composite, 10-point score measuring the short-term outlook for the hotel sector. It is based on a weighted average of survey respondents’ travel likelihood in the next three months (50%), self-reported household financial security (30%) and a preference to stay in hotels for travel (20%).
“With Americans planning for more hotel stays this year and business travel moving in the right direction, AHLA’s Hotel Booking Index is a cause for optimism among hoteliers,” said AHLA President & CEO Chip Rogers. “This positive momentum is great news for the hotel industry as well as its employees, who are enjoying more career opportunities, upward mobility and flexibility than ever before.”
Other key findings include the following:
- Hotels are the top lodging choice for those planning to travel overnight for the upcoming holidays Martin Luther King Jr. Day (47%), Valentine’s Day (54%), and President’s Day (42%)
- 48% of business travelers have extended a business trip in 2022 for leisure purposes, and 84% of business travelers are interested in bleisure
- 60% of adults are likely to take more vacation/leisure trips in 2023 compared to 2022
- 45% of business travelers are likely to take more business trips in 2023 compared to 2022
The two HBI surveys of more than 4,000 adults were conducted Dec. 16 – 19, 2022, and Dec. 28, 2022, to Jan. 2, 2023.