Skift Take

Today's podcast discusses Hilton's strong earnings, Taylor Swift's short-term rental impact, and Verb's host cuts.

Series: Skift Daily Briefing

Skift Daily Briefing Podcast

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Good morning from Skift. It’s Thursday, October 26. Here’s what you need to know about the business of travel today.

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Episode Notes

Hilton’s third-quarter earnings call suggested that U.S. hotel demand is returning to pre-pandemic norms. However, the company is seeing bookings surge at its overseas hotels, reports Senior Hospitality Editor Sean O’Neill.

Hilton’s revenue per available room — an important industry metric — rose only 3% in the U.S. in the third quarter. But it jumped 39% in the Asia-Pacific region. Hilton also reported worldwide growth in revenue per available room across all customer segments. 

The company generated $379 million worth of net income in the third quarter, a roughly 10% jump from last year. 

Next, Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour has had an enormous impact on hotel bookings around the U.S. (and Kansas City Chiefs viewership), but what about the short-term rental industry? Short-Term Rental Reporter Srividya Kalyanaraman examines the boost Swift has provided the sector.

Kalyanaraman reports that the Eras Tour contributed roughly $10 million to the short-term rental industry. In addition, the 20 U.S. cities that hosted shows during the Eras tour registered a 28% increase in revenue per available room. Jeff Breece, an executive at revenue management program Beyond Pricing, said cities also saw double-digit increases in occupancy and average daily rates.  

Finally, vacation rental brand Vrbo has recently cut ties with a large number of hosts who have canceled guest bookings too frequently, reports Executive Editor Dennis Schaal. 

Tim Rosolio, an Expedia Group vice president, said at a conference this week that Vrbo, an Expedia Group brand, has essentially been getting rid of bad apples from its ranks. He said that unnecessary cancellations could not only anger guests but turn them off from booking a vacation rental again. Rosolio noted that Vrbo has always viewed how many properties it has as a bit of a vanity number. 

In addition, Vrbo has also decided to levy penalties of up to 50% of a gross booking against hosts who cancel too much.

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Tags: hilton, short-term rentals, skift podcast, taylor swift, vrbo

Photo credit: A double room in the Tru by Hilton Ashburn One Loudoun. Hilton

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