Fri, Aug 05, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Reservations drop at Hualien’s hotels

Staff Writer, with CNA

This summer’s reservation and occupancy rates are significantly lower than that of previous years, several hotel owners in Hualien County said.

Summertime is usually the boom season for the local hospitality industry in Hualien, yet last month and this month have not been so hot for hotels and homestay lodging owners.

A local hotel manager surnamed Tseng (曾) expressed his disappointment in last month’s 60 percent average occupancy rate.

There had been a tiny peak during the Hualien Summer Festival, but Chinese tour groups — which are the major customers — were much fewer than last year, he said.

The festival featured a series of events, including nightly concerts and performances from July 15 to July 24.

TOUR GROUPS

“However, the reservation rate in August has already reached 80 percent,” Tseng said, adding that many Chinese tour groups had booked the rooms in advance.

Business this month is not looking so good for other hotels and homestays in Hualien that target domestic travelers.

A manager at another local -hotel said that he saw a 3 percent rise in occupancy last month compared with last year, but the reservation rate has dipped to 50 percent this month.

HOMESTAYS

Owners of homestays also expressed concern.

Yeh Chen-chin (葉陳錦), head of a homestay association in Hualien, said the booking rate this month has dropped 40 percent from last year, even though last month maintained the same level of occupancy as last year.

“It could be related to the lunar ghost month that falls in August this year,” Yeh said.

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