The first six months of 2010 saw occupancy levels in London hotels soar despite the volcanic ash cloud, strikes and bad weather, according to new research by PricewaterhouseCoopers.](http://www.pwc.co.uk/)
The average London revenue per available room (revpar) climbed from £87 in H1 2009 to £95 a year later. Revpar in the provinces, which are more dependent on domestic air travel, rose 1.2% to almost £39.
Business visits to the UK increased by 2% in Q1 2010 compared to Q1 2009, which saw a 26% fall. But leisure visits have dropped by 4%
PricewaterhouseCoopers, which published the figures as part of an update to its Hotel Forecast, said that branded budget and luxury operators were starting to see better times. Overall during the half year, London luxury annual room rate (ARR) has risen by 7% to £235.
Liz Hall, head of hotels research for PricewaterhouseCoopers said: "London is still driving the UK recovery, underpinned by solid ARR gains of over 6%, as the business mix reflects more transient mid week travellers. However, consumer confidence may take a tumble this winter as government cuts, VAT increase from 15% last year to 20% from January 2011, and a failure of incomes to keep pace with inflation starts to hit disposable income."
But she also warned that proposed public sector spending cuts of 25% would see a 0.4% drop in 2010 RevPAR to 2.7% and a 0.8% fall to 3.9% in 2011.
[Revpar boost brings optimistic start to new decade for London hotels >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2010/01/05/331528/Revpar-boost-brings-optimistic-start-to-new-decade-for-London.htm)
[Revpar falls by 8% in London and by 9.6% in the regions >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2009/07/15/328695/Revpar-falls-by-8-in-London-and-by-9.6-in-the-regions.htm)
By Neil Gerrard
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