According to the recently released hotels.com Hotel Price Index (HPI), the
average price of a hotel room in the U.S fell 17 percent in the first six
months of 2009 compared to the same period in 2008. Room rates in the U.S
now cost, on average, $115 a night, down from $139 the year before.
“This is by far the most significant change in prices we’ve seen since we
created the Hotel Price Index. Americans’ travel dollars have never gone
farther than in 2009,” said David Roche, President of hotels.com. “As
properties continue to roll out discounts and other incentives to attract
guests, the gap between the top star categories has narrowed, giving
travelers more value and making luxury more accessible than any other time
in the past five years.”
The United States followed a larger global trend with room rates around the
world down 17 percent in the first half of the year, according to the HPI.
The fall in room rates was driven by price drops across every continent
with hotel rooms in Europe down 16 percent, rates in North America and Asia
both declining 17 percent, and hotel prices in Latin America falling 18
Hotels.com’s HPI revealed that Las Vegas overtook New York City as the
favourite domestic destination for U.S travellers in the first half of
2009, with room rates in Las Vegas hotels just $82 a night on average.
Destinations rounding out the top five U.S. favourites included New York
City, Orlando, Chicago hotels and San Francisco.
Las Vegas and New York hotels, also both experienced the nation’s greatest
drop in room rates with each destination down 30 percent compared to the
same period the previous year. Despite this fall in hotel prices, New York
City still held its spot as the most expensive U.S. destination of those
tracked in the global list, with prices averaging $196 during Q1 and Q2
Among the states, New York was the most expensive destination, followed by
Hawaii, Massachusetts and Wyoming, whose ski tourism helped boost hotel
prices in the state. The nation’s least expensive states in the first half
of 2009 included Nevada, with room rates just $77 on average, Idaho and
The hotels.com HPI tracks the real prices paid per hotel room rather than
advertised rates, using a weighted average based on the number of rooms
sold in each of the markets hotels.com operates in. The recent HPI report
examines hotel prices paid at 78,000 hotels across 13,000 locations around
the world for the period January to June 2009, compared to the same period
the year before.
The international scale of hotels.com in terms of both customers and
destinations makes the HPI one of the most comprehensive benchmarks
available, as it incorporates chain and independent hotels, as well as
specialty lodging options such as vacation rentals and bed and breakfast