Birmingham’s hotel market suffers

Birmingham’s hotels are continuing to struggle, according to the latest research from business advisory firm Deloitte.

The results of its hotel survey show occupancy levels in the city’s hotels for the year-to-September at just 62.8 per cent.

Manchester, Cardiff, Bristol and Liverpool are all faring better with occupancy levels of 68 per cent, 68.6 per cent, 69.5 per cent and 71 per cent respectively.

Birmingham’s revPAR (revenue per available room) has fallen by 12.8 per cent to £36, the fourth lowest in the UK after Swindon at £32, Nottingham at £31 and Sheffield at £28.

But for some UK cities the decline in RevPAR so far this year has been much steeper, with Sheffield, Belfast and Reading seeing it decrease by 29.5 per cent, 26.3 per cent and 23.8 per cent.

The best performing city in the survey is York, with occupancy levels at 77.3 per cent and a growth in revPAR of 0.2 per cent.

According to Alistair Pritchard, head of Deloitte’s tourism, hospitality and leisure practice in the Midlands, this may be due to the decline in overseas visitors and a reduction in the number of attendees at business conventions and conferences in the city.

“The number of overseas visitors to the UK was down by eight per cent during the first seven months of the year, according to the Office of National Statistics and this has resulted in average room rates being discounted across the board,” said Mr Pritchard.

“There has also been a substantial reduction in business visitors as companies cut back on travel in the downturn. Birmingham’s hotels are heavily reliant on business tourism and this reduction has contributed to the lower occupancy levels.

“The city’s hotels are likely to see further falls in revPAR before recovery begins but the decline appears to be showing signs of slowing.

“Hoteliers may also see higher numbers of visitors during the Christmas period when the German market and seasonal festivities will attract people to the city.”



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