With the peak fall and winter holiday travel season quickly approaching, visitors are already heading to Cancun and other tourist hotspots around the Mexican Caribbean to start their getaway vacation early.
Visitors Already Arriving
Demand for hotel accommodation in Isla Mujeres is already hitting strong occupancy numbers the week before the fall holiday season starts.
According to the latest numbers from the Hotel Association of Cancun, Puerto Morelos and Isla Mujeres, the amount of hotel rooms already occupied on the island this week averages 80.9 percent. That accounts for more than 16,000 guests so far on the island.
However, on select days the occupancy level was as high as 88 percent.
Meanwhile, Cancun had daily occupancy rates as high as 86.6 percent on select days, but overall occupancy only averaged 77.6 percent the week before the fall holidays.
Because of the number of total available hotel rooms in Cancun, that amounted to nearly 75,000 visitors enjoying the beach resort destination the week before the holiday.
Puerto Morelos had about 10,500 guests staying in the area which resulted in an average occupancy level of 68.7 percent this week. Some daily occupancy levels were as high as 77.7 percent.
All three resort destinations are expecting average occupancy levels during the peak fall and winter holiday season to be 90 percent and above.
Guests More Price Conscious
Traditionally, hotels away from the city center attract more budget-oriented travelers looking to avoid the high prices common at some of the beachfront hotels and all-inclusive resorts.
The numbers show that travelers may be a little more price-conscious than usual this year as they are seeking more value-oriented accommodation options as opposed to the high-priced luxury beachfront and all-inclusive properties.
The Cancun Downtown Hotel Committee shared that their region was seeing strong demand from travelers.
The popular urban hotels in the city center of Cancun were running at 77 percent occupancy for the month of November. This was a big improvement over the 59 percent occupancy levels for the month of September.
Several of the hotels and resorts in the area proactively lowered their low-season average daily room rate during the month of September to hold occupancy levels above 60 percent. Those lower rates are expected to end this week with peak fall holiday travel season starting next week.
Expectations Are High
The hotels and resorts in Cancun and surrounding areas in the Mexican Caribbean have high expectations for the upcoming peak fall and winter holiday travel season.
However, they are being cautious in response to a 13 percent drop in American tourism experienced in the area leading into the recent low season.
If the numbers are soft coming into the holidays, additional rate adjustments may be needed to balance the tourist traffic.
Tips For Travelers
Tourists should be planning for a busy upcoming travel season in Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean. Because of this, they should make reservations now for flights, hotel rooms, and tours for their vacation getaway period.
However, it is recommended that tourists seek to make hotel reservations that are cancelable in the event that prices fall. Travelers can then rebook hotel rooms at lower rates.
Some airline fares are already starting to fall. Several airlines cut holiday travel business class fares to Cancun from Los Angeles and other Southwest United States airports on Monday. So far, the fare cuts were for business class seats and have not affected coach seats yet.
However, it may be an early indicator that demand for flights to Cancun is soft, especially among the luxury traveling set, which are willing to pay more for business class flights.
This was reflected in the increased levels of interest for hotels in the downtown area of Cancun relative to the overall occupancy level for Cancun as a whole.
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