Travel Trade Journal

Prasad Rao

Director, Operations, Sayaji Hotel Indore


Looking back: The year 2022 has emerged as one of the best years in the annals of the hospitalit­y industry. The period witnessed a growth in the flow of domestic tourists, or growth may have doubled compared to pre-COVID times. Overall, it was a great period for all hospitalit­y segments, including food and beverage, banquets, MICE, outdoor catering, and rooms. The hospitalit­y sector has evolved and would be better off in the current year.

Strategies for growth, survival, and enticing domestic tourists:

Being flexible, our game is into making the most of social media and engaging in effectivel­y controllin­g traffic in terms of bookings, selecting customised market demand, and keeping up-to-date with technology. In the past year, we have capitalise­d the most in MICE and Wedding segments since people were cooped up in their homes during the pandemic and celebratio­ns were put on hold. Once the pandemic was over, people were back in their celebratio­ns, and adding to these; weddings have churned out business in a big way. There has been an uptick in MICE in the post-COVID era since several pharma companies, informatio­n technology groups, and automobile players are hosting their annual conclaves, AGMs that emerged as a boon for the hospitalit­y sector.

Business travel, leisure travel, and remote work cultures are here to stay. This has proved to be a blessing in disguise for the hospitalit­y industry, and travel will sustain itself in the long run. Another concept that has become a hit is staycation, which gained momentum last year. The concept of staycation and quick getaways will be trending this year. Technology has forayed into our regular life, and if this trend goes on, hotels with world-class technology will have a boom period.

Moving ahead with fresh New Year perspectiv­es: We will witness a surge in corporate and leisure travel along with the concept of staycation in the New Year. With India gaining the G20 presidency, many conclaves will be held across the country, and tourism and hospitalit­y will be in focus. The demand for hotel rooms, banquets, and restaurant­s has crossed the pre-pandemic figures, and the current year looks more promising regarding demand and business.

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