With festive season ending staycation season coming to an end
With school holidays and festive season ending, hotels say demand normalising
December, or what many dubbed "the staycation season", saw an influx of families looking for a quick getaway.
Demand was so high that some hotels just could not keep up. Families who booked rooms at Grand Park Orchard in mid-December had shared their displeasure in having to wait seven hours just to check-in. This meant snaking queues at the hotel lobby, disappointed guests and cranky children.
But as December came to a close, it seems that the staycation frenzy did too.
Ms Margaret Heng, executive director of the Singapore Hotel Association, said hotel occupancy by locals is typically muted after the festive celebrations in February. "We also foresee lower demand when school resumes, as staycations tend to be more popular during school holiday periods. These are all in line with the vacation habits and normal peak periods of travel for locals," she added.
A spokesman for Park Hotel Clarke Quay and Grand Park Orchard said demand has normalised, especially "with year-end holidays done and dusted".
Miss Cinn Tan, chief sales and marketing officer of Pan Pacific Hotels Group, said: "With travel restrictions still in place and Singaporeans unable to celebrate Chinese New Year abroad, Pan Pacific Hotels Group has seen an estimated increase of 10 per cent to 15 per cent in staycation bookings over this period."
Most hotels noted that Singaporeans hopped on the staycation trend to use SingapoRediscovers Vouchers, which can be redeemed across five authorised booking platforms: Changi Recommends, GlobalTix, Traveloka, Trip.com and Klook.
Ms Sarah Wan, general manager at Klook, told TNP that weekend staycation bookings made up 70 per cent of this month's bookings to date.
"Staycation bookings for the Chinese New Year and Valentine's Day weekend have also proven to be especially popular, with bookings made within that weekend equivalent to about a quarter of bookings in January 2021," she said.
Ms Ru Yi, area general manager at Trip.com, said it will continue to support its partners during periods of low demand with packages with value-adds and benefits, such as early check-ins, late check-outs and complimentary breakfasts.
Mr Nuno Guerreiro, regional director of South Asia Pacific at Booking.com, said: "Staycations are the new vacations, and are at the forefront of travel agendas in this current, more restricted world."
Its recent global annual survey, Future of Travel, revealed that about one in five Singaporeans surveyed intend to continue travelling domestically in the next seven months, with 51 per cent of respondents saying they prefer relaxing trips, which are what staycations embody.