Amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Caribbean hotels showed double-digit performance declines during the weeks ending with March 14 and March 21 2020, according to preliminary weekly data from STR.
Before we get into the details of that impact, it is important to note that STR is temporarily publishing weekly data for the Caribbean based on preliminary data.
This preliminary data represents a percentage of STR’s total sample for the region. Once monthly processing is complete, data points will likely appear different.
Week ending March 14
During the week of 8-14 March (compared with 10-16 March 2019), occupancy in the region dropped 18.4% to 65.7%, and average daily rate (ADR) fell 20.2% to US$240.9, resulting in a 34.9% decrease in revenue per available room (RevPAR) to US$158.40.
Among data-sufficient islands within the Caribbean region, the Bahamas saw the steepest year-over-year decline in demand (-19.5%), which resulted in the second-largest decline in occupancy (-19.4% to 70.4%). That coupled with the largest drop in ADR (-25.4% to US$261.19), caused the steepest decline in RevPAR (-39.8% to US$183.75).
Puerto Rico experienced the greatest decline in occupancy (-20.9% to 61.2%) and one of the largest decreases in ADR (-11.3% to US$209.18), which resulted in a substantial drop in RevPAR (-29.9% to US$128.04).
Barbados was among the least affected Caribbean markets but still recorded a double-digit decrease in RevPAR (-14.4% to US$237.22) due to decreases in occupancy (-7.2% to 81.6%) and ADR (-7.8% to US$290.64).
Week ending March 21
During the following week (15-21 March 2020 compared with 17-23 March 2019), the region saw further double-digit declines in each of the three key performance metrics: occupancy (-61.3% to 30.6%), ADR (-29.1% to US$217.34) and RevPAR (-72.6% to US$66.45).
During that week, the Bahamas experienced the steepest decreases in occupancy (-72.7% to 22.1%) and ADR (-19.5% to US$292.58), which led to the largest decline in RevPAR (-78.0% to US$64.67).
Barbados was one of the only Caribbean markets to maintain an absolute occupancy above 50% and experienced only a relatively mild decline in ADR compared to the rest of the region. Barbados occupancy declined 41.6% to 52.2%; ADR decreased 6.9% to US$293.76; and RevPAR fell 45.6% to US$153.42.
An STR webinar for the Caribbean & Mexico will be held on 3 April.
Rico Louw is client account manager at STR. He can be reached at email@example.com.