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Survey indicates strong recovery of the hotel sector amid pandemic

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The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) conducted a survey between November 10 and 12, 2020 to assess the extent of recovery in the hotels, particularly with the reopening of the economy and continued implementation of the Government measures to mitigate the measures of COVID-19. The survey was a follow up to one conducted in September, with coverage expanded to cover hotels in Naivasha.

The highlights of the Hotels Survey include:96 percent of hotels that were sampled across the country are now operating compared to 89 percent in September and 35 percent in May, mainly reflecting the continued easing of COVID-19 restrictions and compliance with the health protocols.

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Employment in the sector continues to recover towards the pre-COVID levels, averaging 53 per cent in November compared with 45 per cent in September and 37 per cent in May, all relative to the pre-COVID-19 levels. The average bed occupancy has also continued to recover gradually, averaging 23 per cent in November and October, compared to 24 per cent in September and 10 per cent in May.

The utilization of restaurants and conference services has also improved gradually since May. Respondents indicated the negative impact of a resurgence in COVID-19 infections in November relative to October.

Local guests continue to support activity in the sector during the COVID-19 period, accounting for over 80 percent of the total clientele for accommodation and restaurant services.On average, under the prevailing conditions, 58 percent of hotels expect to attain normal (pre COVID) levels of operations between late 2020 and 2021. Despite the recent resurgence in COVID-19 infections, respondents were optimistic about a strong recovery of the sector once the pandemic is contained.

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