Kelowna’s hotel occupancy is down significantly for the month of June, according to data collected by Tourism Kelowna.
Kelowna hotels are operating at a 36.5 per cent occupancy rate, down substantially from Kelowna’s normal average of 80 to 85 per cent for the month of June.
On June 26, provincial health officials implemented Phase 3 of the reopening plan, which included the go-ahead for interprovincial travel. Although, more visitors doesn’t necessarily mean more business, according to Ballantyne.
“We’re noticing that a return to travel doesn’t necessarily mean a return to profitability for businesses,” said Lisanne Ballantyne, president and CEO of Tourism Kelowna.
“We’re guesstimating right now that July and August will go up, but we’re still thinking (hotel occupancy) will be under 50 per cent.”
Tourism Kelowna has been tracking cellphone data and has been able to see how many people are coming into Kelowna on a daily basis, including how many are spending the night.
“I can tell you that we have very strong visitation numbers for June,” said Ballantyne.
“But, people are staying in hotels. They weren’t out and about spending the money, so I think that’s why were are getting that feeling like it’s very busy here, but the businesses aren’t seeing the profitability they need to survive the summer.”
While the hotel occupancy and visitation in Kelowna is much lower than your average year, Ballantyne said Kelowna is actually doing much better than other parts of the province.
“The fact that we are known resort community helps us. It will be interesting to see what happens in the fall.”