Olympic hotels boom fails to appear

Hotel roomThe expected hotels booking bonanza during the Olympics has fallen flat.

Tourists were expected to have to fight to get accommodation amid fears of sky-high room rates.

But London hotels are far from full and many have had to slash prices.

Hotel provider JacTravel said bookings in London were "very substantially down" compared with the same period last year.

Both JacTravel and travel website Travelzoo said that London hoteliers had had to discount room rates, with Travelzoo saying that hoteliers had overestimated demand.

JacTravel director Angela Skelly said: "Compared with the same period last year, bookings for London are very substantially down, whereas bookings for all other European cities are significantly up - as is London in September."

JacTravel, which books more than 500,000 bed nights a year in London, said that as of last week, room rates were down to normal levels having been inflated by as much as 300% two months ago.

It said some four-star hotels which had been quoting rates of £300 to £400 had dropped them to around £109 to £150, while some two-star establishments had slashed prices from £200 to £50.

Travelzoo UK managing director Joel Brandon-Bravo said: "As with the royal wedding, it does look like many hoteliers overestimated demand and are now left with empty rooms to fill."

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