Venice’s Tourism Fee Success, Slower Hotel Growth and New Vacation Rental Markets

Skift Take

Today’s podcast looks at Venice’s tourist fee, slower growth for hotels, and new markets for vacation rentals.

Good morning from Skift. It’s Friday, June 7, 2024. Here’s what you need to know about the business of travel today.

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Episode Notes

Authorities in Venice believe the roughly $5 entry fee it charges visitors has benefited the city. And a top tourism official told Skift Venice could raise the amount, writes Global Tourism Reporter Dawit Habtemariam. 

Simone Venturini, the city’s deputy mayor for tourism, said the fee is part of Venice’s strategy to preserve its beauty and pivot away from being “a cheap tourism capital.” Venturini added that everything has gone smoothly since the entry fee was implemented in April. He said the city is considering hiking it to roughly $10. 

Venturini said the entry fee mainly targets local day-trippers. He also disputed the notion that the majority of Venetians object to it, stating a protest that attracted 200 people didn’t represent the views of most residents.  

Next, U.S. hotel demand growth is projected to slow down — even in the luxury sector, reports Senior Hospitality Editor Sean O’Neill.  

Data firms STR and Tourism Economics project a roughly 2% increase in average daily rates this year. That’s down from a previous estimate of 3%. STR President Amanda Hite said hotel industry figures believe there isn’t as much weekend demand for leisure as expected. 

Hite added she was surprised about the revised projection in the luxury segment. O’Neill notes the luxury sector faces greater risks due to a shift in the guest mix from leisure travelers toward more group bookings and business travelers. 

Finally, population shifts across the U.S. could drive vacation rental growth in certain markets, writes Reporter Elizabeth Casolo.

AirDNA Chief Economist Jamie Lane said at the Skift Short-Term Rental Summit this year that the “mass exodus” of people from certain locations would impact where guests stay. Lane said that would result in people vacationing in entirely different markets, with Casolo citing Texas and Florida as states that have seen population growth. 

Lane added AirDNA had identified up-and-coming hot sports for vacation rentals. The four highest-ranked destinations AirDNA listed were all in Texas. 

Presenter/Producer: Jose Marmolejos

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