Quarterly Report Qatar Q4 2022: Hospitality Market Overview
Hotels see a major increase in Average Daily Rates during the FIFA World Cup
The supply of hotel rooms in Qatar surged towards the end of 2022, as a number of new establishments opened for business in time for the FIFA 2022 World Cup. Hotels including The Fairmont, The Ned, The Chedi Katara, Raffles, Wyndham The Beach, and The Waldorf Astoria in Lusail contributed to an increase in room numbers of more than 7,000 in 2022. Hotel apartment supply grew by more than 1,600 keys in 2022, as buildings including Element City Centre and Element West Bay opened their doors.
Cushman and Wakefield estimate that the overall supply of hotel keys reached approx. 37,000 keys ahead of the World Cup,which represented a 125% increase in less than 10 years.
National Tourism Council (NTC) statistics covering national hotel performance during the World Cup have not yet been released; however, indicators for the first nine months of the year illustrated a recovery in tourism performance from the COVID-19 hit years of 2020 and 2021. The NTC’s statistic report for the first six months of 2022 showed that visitors increased to 725,000, up from 100,000 in 2021, but still below the pre-pandemic figures. Overall tourist arrivals for 2022 are expected to show a substantial increase, after the World Cup towards year-end.
Saudi Arabia has recovered its position as the primary source market for international visitors following the resumption of diplomatic ties in the GCC.
Hotel Performance results for Q4, published by the Planning and Statistics Authority indicated that occupancy rates for four and five-star hotels were down on 2021 figures, while Average Daily Rates were considerably higher than the previous year. The results indicate that traveling fans opted for lower priced accommodation where possible, with occupancy rates for 1&2 star at 92%; while accommodation options such as Barahat Al Janoub and Madinatna also provided budget-sensitive visitors with alternative options to the luxury hotels. The overall Average Daily Rates for November and December were QAR 3,140 and QAR 2,610 respectively. Both months recorded a 300%+ increase in 2021 rates – highlighting the premium prices achieved during the FIFA World Cup.
Qatar Tourism recently announced that the country aims to triple the number of visitors to 6 million by 2030. The expansion of the tourism sector is to capitalize on the infrastructure put in place for 2022, and will focus on an international marketing campaign rolled out in 17 major global markets. The expanding hotel sector, and associated F&B operations, will rely on Qatar significantly increase visitor numbers in the short to medium terms to support occupancy rates and maintain revenues.