Branded hotel operators have brushed off fears over a drop in consumer spending, with the vast majority expecting revenue per available room (revpar) to increase this year, research has revealed.
An in-depth survey of 111 hoteliers, conducted by TRI Hospitality Consulting, showed that 83% expect a rise in revpar this year, compared with 2007.
London hoteliers are more positive than those in the rest of the UK, with 37% of operators in the capital expecting revpar growth of more than 5%, compared with 29% in the provinces.
Mark Dickens, managing director of the HotStats report at TRI, said: "The general high level of confidence amongst UK's hoteliers is surprising, given that most indicators are telling us that 2008 will be a much tougher year for the UK economy than 2007."
Tightening economic conditions will see mid-market sector lose some business and leisure custom to the budget sector, but the mid-market brands will not "take this lying down", according to Dickens.
"They are likely to galvanise all of the sales and marketing tools in their arsenals which will result in the budget and mid-market sectors competing ever more keenly on price over the coming months," he said.
By Daniel Thomas
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