Panama: Hotel Occupancy Mantains Downtrend

The increase in the average number of days that tourists stayed in the country was not enough to offset the drop in hotel occupancy, which fell to 50% in the first quarter of this year.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The difficulties that hotel sector is facing due to the lack of international promotion of the country as a tourist destination and the oversupply of rooms registered in the country explains the downward trend which is still being seen in hotel occupancy rates.

It is hoped that the international promotion which the Tourism Authority will start once it has completed the tender process will help improve the sector's performance.

The occupancy rate dropped to 50% in the during the first quarter of 2016, which is a reduction of 9% compared to the same period in 2015.

Figures from the General Comptroller's Office indicate that in March 2016 there were 10,452 hotel rooms, similar to the same period in 2015, when 10,422 were recorded.

The daily average of overnight stays in the first quarter of 2016 was 11.3, higher than the 9.8 registered in the same period in 2015.

See figures from the Office of the Comptroller General (In Spanish).

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More on this topic

Panama: Hotels React to Low Occupancy Rates

March 2016

Solutions are being sought to the lack of promotion of the country and unfair competition from illegal hotels, so that the occupancy rate, which went from 70% in 2011 to 52% in 2015, can be improved.

According to the Office of the Comptroller General of the Republic, the occupancy rate in Panama fell once again last year, going from 56.1% in 2014 to 52.3% in 2015.

Tough Competition for Hotels in Panama

September 2015

Lack of international promotion is the cause indicated by entrepreneurs of the fall in the average rate in the capital, which has dropped by 40% in the past five years.

The union says the problem of oversupply of rooms in the country began to get worse in 2012, when the international tourism promotion agreement which the government signed with an advertising agency ended.They argue that "...While Panama disappeared from international markets, other countries such as Costa Rica, Mexico, Ecuador and the Dominican Republic increased their spending on advertising. "

Tourist in-flow increases but Hotel Occupancy Falls

July 2014

In Panama the increase in room supply has caused a price war between hotels trying to attract travelers and increase the occupancy rate which on average is not more than 60%.

Hotel occupancy in the country has been declining since 2011, when it stood at 68.6% dropping to 59.3% within the sector this year, according to figures from the Tourism Authority of Panama (ATP).

Hotel Occupancy in Panama Improves

May 2013

During the first four months of 2013 the convention and congress sector revived the hotel sector which recorded an average occupancy of 61%.

Prensa.com reports that "in total, between January and April 831,593 visitors were reported, which is an increase of 4.4% with 34,893 additional travelers compared to the same period last year."It is estimated that during this period about $847.7 million entered the Panamanian economy.

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