Winter Bookings Heat Up

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SAM Magazine--November 17, 2011--Bookings for the upcoming winter season continue a positive trend upward at participating mountain destinations throughout the western U.S., despite mixed economic news and indicators, according to the most recent report by the Mountain Travel Research Program (MTRiP) released yesterday. As of Oct. 31, on-the-books occupancy for the next six months (November-April) is up 10.8 percent compared to the same time last year while the average daily rate (ADR) has also crept up an average of 3.5 percent. The monthly MTRiP Briefing that includes the compiled data and analysis, also revealed that October lodging occupancy and ADR declined during October with occupancy down 3.3 percent for the month and ADR down 11.8 percent.

The pace of bookings taken in October was also positive with reservations taken during the month for arrivals from October through March up 12.5 percent compared to the same time last year. Every month experienced increases with the biggest jump seen for December arrivals.

For November, actual on-the-books occupancy is up 9.5 percent compared to the same time last year with the daily rate edging up 4.5 percent. And, as of Oct. 31, occupancy is up in five of the next six months with only April showing a decline.

"It's reassuring to see advanced lodging reservations continuing their positive direction as the 2011-12 ski and snowboard season comes into focus," says Ralf Garrison, director of MTRiP. "While the overall economy continues to have a negative influence on consumer spending, early snowstorms in many regions probably helped perpetuate the positive upward trend that first appeared several months ago," he adds.