Pandemic slashes Travelodge revenue by 60.9%

20 July 2021 by
Pandemic slashes Travelodge revenue by 60.9%

Travelodge recorded a 60.9% fall in revenue to £284.4m during 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic forced nearly all of its 586-strong portfolio to close its doors to guests.

Statutory loss before tax increased to £307m, compared to a loss of £72.5m in 2019, according to the annual report for Thame and London, Travelodge's parent company, lodged at Companies House.

After starting the year strongly, the budget brand was forced to close the doors on 24 March 2020 to guests of most of its hotels, apart from 50 that remained open for NHS workers, key workers and vulnerable groups, before opening again on 15 July. Further lockdowns later in the year across different parts of the UK added to the colossal fall in revenue for the group.

Overall revenue per available room (revpar) for the year was down 59.6% to £16.89 from £41.85 in 2019, while average room rate fell 21.5% year-on-year from £52.08 to £40.86. Occupancy dropped 39.1 percentage points to 41.3%.

Nine new hotels opened during 2020, while a further seven that were ready to launch were delayed due to operating restrictions. Those seven hotels have since opened.

The year saw considerable change for Travelodge in the leadership of the company with former chief executive Peter Gowers stepping down from the role at the end of 2020. Craig Bonnar was confirmed as Gowers' successor in May 2021.

Brain Wallace resigned as chairman of the company in September due to ill health and passed away later in the year. Martin Robinson took over the position in March 2021.

The group also underwent a CVA that introduced proposed rent reductions with a break clause allowing landlords to terminate leases and re-let hotels. Although most landlords stuck with the brand, nine moved to Ago Hotels and Whitbread picked up two.

Forecasting the future for Travelodge was "challenging", said Bonnar in the report, and would depend on the vaccination roll-out, consumer and business behaviour and the general economic environment.

"Each one percentage point change up or down in revpar compared to 2019 levels would be expected to impact Travelodge revenues by approximately £6-7m," he said.

Photo: Shutterstock

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