Arne Sorenson, chief executive of Marriott International, has said he and chairman JW Marriott Jr will not be taking any salary for 2020 and the hotel chain's executive team will be taking a 50% pay cut amidst the coronavirus crisis.
In a video message, Sorenson said the group was also reducing staff as well as closing floors and food and beverage outlets in hotels. Hundreds of hotels have already closed.
He said the crisis has had a "more severe and sudden financial impact on our business than 9/11 and the 2009 financial crisis combined".
He added: "There is simply nothing worse than telling highly valued associates, people who are the very heart of this company, that their roles are being impacted by events completely outside of their control. I have never been more determined to see us through than I am at this moment.
"While it's impossible to know how long this crisis will last, I know we as a global community will come through the other side and that when we do, our guests will be eager to travel this beautiful world again. When that great day comes, we will be there to welcome them with the warmth and care we are known for the world over."
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), meanwhile, has said it is reducing salaries, including "substantial decreases" for board and executive committee members, and withdrawing its recommendation of a final dividend of $150m (£126m) announced last month. The group said it is anticipating global revenue per available room (revpar) declines of around 60%.
Keith Barr, chief executive of IHG, said: "At this unprecedented time, our top priority remains the health and wellbeing of our guests, colleagues and partners, and ensuring that in light of such a significant impact on the global economy and, in particular, on the travel industry, we take the right steps to protect the long-term health of our business.
"Demand for hotels is currently at the lowest levels we've ever seen. IHG has a robust business model and the measures we are announcing today to reduce costs and preserve cash give us the capacity to manage the business through this unique environment and to support our owners during this incredibly difficult time.
"These were not easy choices and we are mindful of the impact these decisions will have on our colleagues and shareholders. However, we believe that these are essential to ensuring that we come out of this as strong as we possibly can and ready to capitalise on what remains an industry with excellent long-term growth potential."