Updates 9/2/22: Ohio's Travel Industry and Current Research
COST OF TRAVEL AND SCHEDULING CONFLICTS ARE ADDED TO TOP REASONS WHY PEOPLE AREN’T VISITING ATTRACTIONS
Key findings from Impacts Research using date gathered end of Q2 2022:
This study focuses on exhibit-based attractions (such as museums, zoos, aquariums, historic sites, science centers and botanic gardens) as well as performance-based attractions (theatres, ballets, orchestras, etc.)
- Reasons why visitors don’t visit attractions are changing.
- Pre-pandemic, the top reasons were 1) they preferred to do another activity, 2) perceived access challenges, such as being too far away and 3) they’d already “been there and done that,” so there was nothing new to see and do.
- Throughout 2020 and even through early 2022, pandemic and safety concerns still ranked among the top reasons why people did not visit attractions.
- As of 2Q 2022, the sands are shifting yet again! Potential visitors are again saying they prefer to do something else, access challenge and “been there done that,” but cost of travel (lodging, gas, etc.) and scheduling conflicts are now ranked among the top reasons.
- Impacts Research reminds us that cost of admission is typically not the barrier. Previous OTA updates have addressed this in detail. Cost of travel is likely associated with the economic climate and the rising price of gas at the time of the survey.
- Is your attraction open when your visitors are seeking to visit? Do you have to make adjustments to days and hours? With people going back to the office, Impacts Research hints that previous flexibility when many were working from home may make outings more difficult, plus as people feel more comfortable picking up activities they’d dropped during the pandemic, there is more competition for free time competing for their attention.
- If we’ve learned anything the last few years, it’s that people’s thoughts and behaviors change quickly given new circumstances. Whether these two barriers to visitation are lasting is yet to be determined.
OHIO TRAVEL SPENDING DIPS SLIGHTLY IN JULY. INDUSTRY RECOVERY REMAINS UNEVEN AND INFLUENCED BY ECONOMY, PANDEMIC AND CORPORATE POLICIES
Key findings from U.S. Travel Association
- July travel spending in Ohio fell just shy of 2019 levels, declining to 2.3% below 2019 levels after recording a 1% growth in spending in June compared to 2019. Local and state tax revenues in July 2022 are 1.7% less than generated in July 2019.
- Pennsylvania, New York and West Virginia also recorded less spending in July when compared to 2019, -4.2% (PA), -6.3% (MI) and -8.4% (WV). Michigan was up .9%, Indiana was up 1.8% and Kentucky was up 1.7%. Nationally, travel spending was up just .3% over 2019.
- Business travel recovery continues to be uneven. According to STR, company policy is limiting corporate business travel demand – not employee desire. Corporate booking is down 17.6% from 2019 at the same time.
- U.S. hotel demand is expected to recover to 2019 levels in 2023 based on an updated forecast released in August by Tourism Economics. Hotel average daily rate (ADR) is expected to recover to 16.1% ahead of 2019 levels in 2023, but when adjusted for inflation, real ADR will be 1.7% below 2019. RevPAR is expected to improve 29.5% in 2022, followed by a 5.7% increase in 2023.