The inclination of people to prioritize travel after the pandemic might translate into a more enduring shift in consumer spending habits, as indicated by the head of Dalata, Ireland’s largest hotel group. The organization, which manages the Maldron and Clayton brands and oversees 19 hotels in the United Kingdom, announced a noteworthy 24% year-on-year increase in first-half adjusted core profit, totaling 103 million euros ($111 million). Moreover, there appears to be no sign of abating demand for hotel accommodations.
CEO Dermot Crowley shared insights during an interview with Reuters, highlighting the evolving travel trends and their potential long-term influence. He noted, “Certainly 2, 3, 4 years before COVID people in their 20s would have been prioritizing travel and experiences over buying things. That trend had already started and seems now to have extended to the wider population.”
While acknowledging the connection of this trend to the post-COVID era, Crowley speculated that extended exposure to this behavior might lead to a more enduring transformation in travel preferences.
In addition to shifting personal travel patterns, corporate bookings also reflect lasting adjustments, with travelers opting for fewer journeys but longer stays. This shift has implications for Ireland’s substantial multinationals, which have significantly reduced their expenditure on business travel compared to the pre-COVID period.
Dalata highlighted its anticipated performance with a like-for-like revenue per available room (RevPAR) projected to be 5% higher year-on-year for the pivotal months of July and August, following a robust 23% rise in the first half of the year.
The hotel group, headquartered in Dublin, disclosed that it has allocated 750 million euros for potential hotel expansion. London stands as a prime target for this expansion strategy, with the group already having launched two hotels in the city since June.