Hoteliers in metropolitan areas on Sunday urged the Ministry of Transportation and Communications to include them in the third government bailout package, saying that business has continued to suffer despite government promotions of domestic tourism as the COVID-19 pandemic eases in Taiwan.
“Operators in Taipei and New Taipei City feel that [the promotions] have not made any difference for our business,” New Taipei City Hotel Association chairwoman Tseng Mei-chuan (曾美絹) said. “People often leave the cities for long weekends and other holidays. We have few reservations this month and have not seen any for the summer vacation yet.”
Hotels in metropolitan areas in the past served people who came to town for music concerts and trade shows, but those events have been canceled because of the pandemic, Tseng said.
“Before the pandemic, we could charge NT$3,000 per night and still keep an occupancy rate of 70 to 80 percent. Now, there is a general lack of interest even after we reduce room rates by NT$1,000 to NT$2,000,” she said.
The government should include hotels in metropolitan areas in its third bailout package, or at least offer incentives to encourage people to travel to cities and spend a night or two, she said.
Otherwise, more hotels can be expected to fold in the next one or two months, she said.
Hotel Cham Cham Taipei said it expects to have an average occupancy rate of 50 to 60 percent from this month to the summer vacation, down from 80 to 90 percent last year.
However, its Taitung hotel’s occupancy rate rose to 80 percent within a few weeks after it opened this month, it said, adding that nearly all of the rooms were booked for the Dragon Boat Festival holiday and the summer vacation.
Regent Taipei of Formosa International Hotels Corp said that its occupancy rate this month is expected to be about 30 to 40 percent on weekdays and 50 percent on weekends and holidays.
It estimated that the occupancy rate could reach 50 to 60 percent in July and August as the nation enters the high season for family travel.
Another hotel in the group, The Wellspring by Silks in Yilan County’s Jiaosi Township (礁溪), expects average occupancy to rise to 80 percent from this month through August.
The Grand Hotel in Taipei said that it has switched its focus since September last year to target domestic travelers due to a significant downturn in travelers from China.
Last month, its occupancy rate was 56 percent after it offered rooms for only NT$999 per night.
Its occupancy rate this month rose to 70 percent as it continued to offer discounts on rooms and dining in the hotel’s restaurants, it said.
The Tourism Bureau said that the Executive Yuan would finalize details of the stimulus package at the end of this month.
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