21 SEPTEMBER 2009
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HOTELS.COM, in its latest hotel price index (HPI), has found that average room prices across the globe fell 17% in the six months to June compared to the same 2008 period. Price levels are the same as 2003, as the economic crisis keeps away guests. A large number of hotels also opened shortly before the financial doldrums, says the Dallas, Texas-based organisation, which is part of Expedia. The HPI survey tracks real prices paid per hotel room rather than advertised rates at 78,000 hotels across 13,000 locations. The latest index covers the period from January to June 2009. Latin American hotels saw the steepest price fall year-on-year of 18%, as the H1N1 flu outbreak hit tourism hard, while North American hoteliers cut prices by 17%. The average cost for a hotel room in a European hotel was 16% lower than a year before, the survey showed. In Asia, where hotel prices had been holding up better than those in other regions, the decline in business travellers sent prices falling 17%. Only hotels in the Caribbean appeared immune, reducing rates by just 1-2%. Prices in Moscow dropped 50%. www.hotels.com
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