eMonitor results for the second quarter of 2002 show that while worldwide hotel room nights and revenue booked electronically through the Global Distribution Systems (GDSs) decreased versus the same period last year, booking activity was much improved over the first quarter.
The number of room nights booked electronically was down 3.2% from the second quarter of 2001; revenue was off 8% and average rate dropped 4.9%. Although these year-over-year numbers show a decrease, hotels made a significant improvement in second quarter, as compared to first quarter this year, which had an 18% decline in revenue as compared to first quarter 2001.
Electronic room nights year-to-date through the second quarter have decreased by 6.4% from the same time period last year, while revenue is down 13% due to a 6.9% ADR decline. Average length of stay for the 2002 year-to-date period was 2.12 nights, down slightly from last year`s 2.14 nights.
eMonitor results are compiled from TravelCLICK`s comprehensive database, which is the exclusive source of hotel industry electronic distribution data from the Amadeus, Galileo, Sabre, and Worldspan GDSs. TravelCLICK`s data also includes consumer online GDS hotel bookings made through major Internet travel sites, such as Travelocity, Priceline and Expedia.
Travel Agent Component
Travel agent bookings remained the dominant source of hotel e-business, representing 94% of total GDS room nights. The travel agent component of GDS declined 3.5% in room nights and 4.9% in ADR compared to the second quarter of 2001. On a year-to-date basis, travel agent room nights were off 6.9% from 2001, and average rate was also down 6.7.
Internet (consumer online) room nights, excluding bookings from auction sites, displayed growth at 1.6% above the second quarter of 2001. However, average rate was down for GDS powered Internet bookings by 7.8% compared to the second quarter of last year. The ADR of Internet bookings was 22% lower than the ADR for travel agent bookings through the GDS.
Despite the relatively soft first half of the year in the hotel industry, the Internet component displayed a 5% growth in room nights over the first six months. Average rate was down by 9%, which led to a 4% decline in revenue for 2002 year-to-date through the second quarter.
“Travel agent electronic hotel bookings are now down only slightly compared to last year, but the ADR for these booking remain significantly higher than consumer online bookings,” said Bruce W. Mainzer, senior vice president of marketing for TravelCLICK. “GDS powered Internet bookings increased, but we know that stronger growth has recently been reported in other consumer online venues like net rate (wholesaler) sites and brand/chain sites.”
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