2012 And All That Extra Hotel Business…. Not!
You’d think that 2012 would be a great year for hotels but, talking to hoteliers away from the capital, it would appear not to be the case.
The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, Euro 2012 and the Olympics are all great opportunities to celebrate our patriotism – but not necessarily with a weekend away from home.
2012 Whitsun Bank Holiday Hotel Gloom
The Whitsun bank holiday at the end of May and the remainder of the week form half term for a lot of schools and, traditionally, this had made for a natural holiday break for most families – I can remember my own childhood trips to Swanage, the Isle of Wight, west to Ludlow and north to Whitby and Redcar.
But 2012 has been rather different for most families.
I’m not sure whether the holiday was actually moved to fit in with the occasion but, instead of a May Whitsun, half term week was at the beginning of June and there was an extra day of bank holiday on the Tuesday to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
That Tuesday off apparently cost the economy as much as £1.2bn and the weekend itself saw thousands of people flock to London for the flotilla in the Jubilee Pageant on the Thames, the concert followed by a firework display in the Mall and the carriage ride and balcony appearance at Buckingham Palace after the religious ceremony to observe the occasion at St Pauls.
Hundreds of thousands more planned barbecues and street parties – at home.
Hotels further afield, which would normally have been full were, instead, half-empty as the nation celebrated in front of the television and those less patriotic souls who might have been tempted to find peace and quiet away from the flag waving were discouraged by the abysmal weather.
When the sun came out again, many potential holiday makers remained at home to watch England and Ireland in Euro 2012.
And, with the Olympics in July and August, many hoteliers away from the Olympic venues are starting to wonder if the whole year will turn out to be a damp squib.
You can engage in as much local and global marketing as you like. You can almost give away your accommodation. But if there are better attractions on offer elsewhere, it can make an Olympic struggle out of getting the telephone to ring.
Seeing the large numbers of great deals at smaller bed and breakfast establishments away from the main Olympic centres, I know what I would recommend doing if you’re not a big sports fan this summer! It sounds as if some of the promenades will be far less crowded and there will be much smaller queues at the theme parks.
Has your establishment been affected by the many events happening in 2012? Whether telephone calls have gone up or down, we’d like to hear from you.
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