Hotel trends: Short term bookings boom in London

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Micro-stays are proving popular with both business and leisure travellers
Micro-stays are proving popular with both business and leisure travellers

Related tags: Time

The number of consumers booking short term micro-stays in London hotels has risen by 55 per cent in the last month, according to ByHours.com.

The site, which offers pay-per-use bookings in 3,6 and 12 hour periods, reported that while 68 per cent of reservations were made by business travellers, a growing leisure market is using the service to access facilities such as swimming pools and spas in four and five-star hotels.

Two-thirds of bookings were made less than 24 hours in advance, with the majority of guests staying for just three hours (60 per cent).

“Travellers in and out of London are taking advantage of the excess inventory hotels have and are putting it to good use, either to catch up on work or use the five-star facilities,” said Christian Rodriguez, CEO and founder of ByHours.com.

“People are getting used to catching an early morning flight and returning the same day, so hotels are losing out on the usual overnight custom they would have from these business travellers.

"Allowing guests to book for three hours to work and rest prior to a flight is an opportunity to acquire new customers, and promote the times that rooms would otherwise be empty.”

Hospital visits were another key reason for short term bookings, with relatives wanting to rest before returning to the hospital.

Half of bookings (55 per cent) were made via mobile web or using an app, with the most likely check-in times being 11:00, 13:00 and 17:00 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Looking ahead

Rodiguez said he was confident that micro-stays would increase in popularity for all types of guest.

“In London there are many stopovers, and in these first two months [since launching] in the capital we can see that a high percentage of our reservations and requests belong to customers that need hotels inside or next to airports.

“In Spain last year we had over 150,000 bookings and we expect London will be an even bigger market for us in years to come.”

Airport hotel operator Yotel have been offering micro-stays since 2007, with occupancy at its Heathrow site hitting 250 per cent.

BigHospitality previously reported on the growing trend of operators offering micro-stays​ as a means of monetising empty rooms during the day.

Related topics: Business, Venues, Hotels, Trends & Reports

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