The year 2021 has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride for the Indian hotel sector, full of hope and opportunities but also uncertainty as new variants of the virus acted as temporary roadblocks on the road to recovery.
While the year began on a positive note with a surge in domestic leisure travel fueled by a steady drop in active cases and the start of the country’s vaccination program, the recovery was quickly hampered by new restrictions and lockdowns imposed in response to the country’s second wave.
However, it was not a case of the dreaded déjà vu, as hoteliers proactively focused on alternative customer segments and ancillary revenue streams to weather the storm, building on the learnings from the previous year and dealing with the pandemic that refuses to end. As a result, the Indian hotel sector has been recovering faster than expected.
After a truly spectacular performance in the last quarter of 2021, the year 2022 has started on a challenging note, with subdued demand in the first few weeks of the year because of the emergence of Omicron cases in the country. This has been followed by the Ukraine-Russia conflict which is expected to have a negative impact on the country’s economic growth in the long run. However, we expect domestic travel demand will continue to be strong during the year as people have embraced the new ‘normal’ of travel in uncertain times.
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