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Swine flu halves occupancy in Mexican hotels

11 May 2009 by
Swine flu halves occupancy in Mexican hotels

Mexico's hotel industry suffered a sharp decline in occupancy rates as a result of the swine flu outbreak, figures have revealed.

According to data from analyst firm STR Global, hotels in Mexico saw a 50% drop in occupancy in the days following the outbreak, between 26 April and 2 May.

Jan Freitag, vice president global development at STR, said swine flu further damaged an already struggling industry, which was "reeling from bad publicity from gang- and drug-related violence".

"The impact of H1N1 influenza is severe, but we hope it will be fairly short-lived as the international media reports on the easing of travel restrictions," he said. "However, it will likely be felt throughout the summer."

Hospitality figures in the UK have said that the industry is well equipped to deal with swine flu.

The World Travel & Tourism Council has said swine flu is a "serious concern, but no cause for panic".

Analysis: An industry that's used to disasters can cope with swine flu >>

Swine flu "no cause for panic", says tourism body >>

VisitBritain: no need yet to advise UK tourists on swine flu >>

By Kerstin Kühn

E-mail your comments to Kerstin Kühn here.

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