Are price hikes for Olympic hotels leading to tourism disaster?

Roshina Jowaheer
Could price hikes for Olympic hotels lead to tourism disaster?, hotel prices london olympics, london hotels summer 2012
Could price hikes for Olympic hotels lead to tourism disaster?, hotel prices london olympics, london hotels summer 2012

PA



Despite more than a third of London hotel rooms remaining unsold for the Olympics, hoteliers are not backing down with prices still twice as expensive as usual, new research has found.

Hotel booking website Trivago.com revealed to the Daily Telegraph that the average price of a hotel room in London during the Olympics (between 27 July and 12 August) is £281 per night with 36 per cent of rooms still available.

The week before the Olympics, the average hotel stay costs just £180 per night and the week after the Games it reduces further to £159.

The London mayor's office recently accused hoteliers of spoiling the capital's image as an affordable destination by increasing room rates and deputy mayor Kit Malthouse warned that it could cause long-term damage to tourist numbers, as Atlanta saw after the 1996 Games when visitor numbers drastically dropped.

Travel companies are also criticising hotels for putting off ordinary tourists for the summer period.

Accommodation provider for inbound tour operators JacTravel said its bookings were down by 35 per cent during July and 30 per cent throughout August compared with the same months in 2011. However, its bookings for summer holidays to Barcelona and Berlin have increased by more than 100 per cent. The travel company found that some four-star hotels in London were charging more than four times their usual price costing guests up to £415 per night.

Booking website Hotels.com found that since March, the average price of a room during the Olympics had fallen slightly by five per cent to £202. But this is still 93 per cent more than during the same period last year.

Outside the city in Weymouth, Dorset, hoteliers are worried they will lose thousands of pounds as visitors avoid the Games. Guesthouse owners say their bookings are startlingly empty for July and August.

Mark Brunt of Brunswick Guest House told the Dorset Echo: 'None of the regulars are coming during the Olympics because they think it will be so busy. It's certainly not the cash cow the organisers have been saying it will be.'

How much have you paid for a hotel in London during the Olympics? Leave a comment and let us know below.

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