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Drastic decrease in hotel occupancy Due to COVID-19

Willemstad, May 4, 2020 – It’s no secret that COVID-19 has gravely affected the entire economy, the tourism and hospitality sector being one that has also suffered great impacts. 

In March 2020 Curaçao had a hotel occupancy of 34.1%. This is a significant decrease of 54.2% compared to 2019 (74.4%). The Average Daily Rate (ADR) increased with 7% compared to 2019, from $175.87 to $188.26 in 2020. As for the revenue per available room (RevPar), the numbers indicate a drastic decrease of 51%. The revenue per available room in 2019 was $130.83 and in 2020 it was $64.17. 

Compared to the month of February (before Curaçao was affected by COVID-19), hotel occupancy decreased with 54.8%, from 75.4% in February, to 34.1% in March. The ADR experiences a minimal increase of 0.6%, while the RevPar decreased with 54.5%. The ADR in the month of February was $187.12 and in March it became $188.26. In February, the RevPar was $141.03 and in March it decreased to $64.17. 

The unfortunate drastic decrease in numbers were influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic, the closing of the Curaçao borders as well as the lock down implemented locally. 

Curaçao’s economy depends on tourists. This means that there will be an enormous pressure and necessity to open the borders again, since there is currently no demand. 

In agreement with president and CEO of CHATA, “Recovery of our industry doesn’t only rely on internal factors, but also how the world will respond after this COVID-19 crisis, this pandemic will change the landscape of “business as usual” and our recovery plan must be as comprehensive as-possible. In time, we also believe that we must be the first mover to open back our country for business. If we don’t start planning for the future, our financial crisis will be bigger than our current health crisis. We have a once in a lifetime opportunity to take our destination, government infrastructure and how we do business to the next level, but this requires courage and an out of the box thinking to re-invent ourselves as a country. From lowering our cost of doing business, new policies in place, to an innovative tax reform, these are just a few ingredients of a much-needed recovery plan for our tourism industry, but better yet for our Country”. 

In order for Curaçao to revive its tourism industry, all key stakeholders must work together in identifying new products and markets and invest in the tourism and hospitality workforce. The road to recovery might be long, but the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

These numbers were based on 10 CHATA hotel members, which represent roughly 2500 rooms.

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