. Occupancy Rates for U.S. Hotels Rise Slightly at the End of April | Northstar Meetings Group

Occupancy Rates for U.S. Hotels Rise Slightly at the End of April

New data from STR shows occupancy has increased over the past two weeks, with five states leading the demand for rooms. 

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While occupancy rates for American hotels remain negative in year-over-year comparisons, the latest report from lodging-data provider STR shows the number is improving slightly. 

According to the report, occupancy rates in the U.S. have risen moderately over the past two weeks. The number of occupied hotel rooms across the country climbed to 26 percent for the week of April 19-25, compared with 23.4 percent and 21 percent for the previous two weeks. 

In addition, revenue per available room increased from $17.43 for the week of April 12-18 to $19.13 the week of April 19-25. Among the three key performance indicators measured, average daily room rate was the only one to go down -- dropping slightly from $74.53 to $73.61.

Nearly half (40 percent) of the increased demand for hotel rooms came from five states: California, Texas, New York, Florida and Georgia.

The numbers are encouraging for the hotel industry, which has been hard hit by COVID-19. Still, STR cautions that some of the increased business could be due to hotel rooms that are being used by essential workers, government-contracted guests and the homeless population.  

"Demand has grown slightly across the country during the last two weeks, which could provide some hope that the levels seen in early April were indeed the bottom -- especially with some states now moving to ease social-distancing guidance," said Jan Freitag, senior vice president of lodging insights at STR, in a statement. "The 1.4 million additional room nights sold the last two weeks only represent around 100,000 new rooms occupied per night, but gains even that small are certainly better than further declines."