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Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast discusses Wyndham Hotel’s new brand, Asia’s tourism rebound, and the ongoing challenge of getting corporate travelers out of Ukraine.
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As Asian nations such as Malaysia, Singapore and the Philippines are taking steps to treat Covid as an endemic virus, tourism to the region is expected to make a significant rebound in 2022. But what will it look like? A new report provides three different scenarios for Asia’s travel recovery, writes Asia Editor Peden Doma Bhutia.
The Pacific Asia Travel Association’s report, which examines the trends for foreign inbound visitors across the region between 2022 and 2024, envisions mild, medium and severe scenarios in its tourism recovery. The agency’s special advisor John Koldowksi said the parameters determining the scenarios include containing Covid, keeping borders open without a quarantine-on-arrival and reopening entertainment and hospitality venues.
As for what the scenarios predict, interventional visitor arrivals to Asia are expected to surpass 2019 levels under the mild scenario by 2024 while almost equaling them under the medium scenario. However, the severe scenario predicts visitor numbers to Asia will hit 69 percent of 2019 figures.
We turn now to a big move by Wyndham Hotels & Resorts. The U.S.-based hotel franchising giant is creating an extended-stay brand focused on the budget market, reports Senior Travel Editor Sean O’Neill.
Wyndham said on Tuesday it has signed deals with two development partners to launch 50 hotels by 2027. The yet-to-be named brand is expected to open its first property next year, and a Wyndham executive said the company projects its average daily rate for those hotels to run between $50 and $55.
Extended stay caters to travelers staying anywhere from a week to a few months, such as traveling nurses and construction workers. O’Neill writes developers favor the economy extended-stay segment because it generally performs well during periods of economic boom and bust.
Finally, as the war in Ukraine continues, companies are looking to still evacuate workers from Ukraine, writes Corporate Travel Editor Matthew Parsons, noting that the humanitarian crisis is worsening throughout Eastern Europe as countries in the region grapple with a limited amount of corporate housing available for refugees.
Parsons writes that corporate housing in countries such as Poland and Romania are buckling under pressure from the large numbers of Ukrainian refugees as well as Russians seeking shelter there. One travel executive said the crisis is the worst he’s seen during his career.
But despite the urgent need to provide accommodation to those fleeing the war, the same executive said companies need to ensure their employees didn’t apply for refugee status, which he described as a time consuming process.