I am no economist and I promise never to try to morph into one, but Pennsylvania has found another sign that commerce is heading in a better direction. Have you checked out your local Motel (Super) 8, Holiday Inn, Red Roof, or almost any other hotel’s parking lot lately? Okay, probably not, and I confess I have not either, which is why this would not have become a story, save for STR Global keeping track of such things.
According to STR, Pennsylvania is coming off its best year ever for hotel room bookings, 27.5 million rooms were sold in 2010, which adds up to $2.8 billion in gross sales, take that number a step further and the state benefitted by raking in $165 million, in taxes.
“Unlike property taxes, the hotel tax is paid by someone else yet levied, collected and invested locally,” Mickey Rowley, deputy secretary for tourism said.
Rowley says every region of Pennsylvania experienced robust sales, which mirrors a nationwide trend.
Jeff Higley, communications director for STR, said July 2010 now stands as the highest grossing number for motel rooms on record, a whopping $10.2 billion was taken in nationwide; up 10.5 percent from 2009.
“Demand for hotel rooms is up,” especially good news in light of 2009, which is the worst year on record for hotels, said Higley.
He attributed enormous growth to an improving economy and corporations getting back in the game of sending executives on the road, and room rates are still a bargain as compared to 2008.
In Pennsylvania, rooms on average cost about $100.39 a night, what else undoubtedly helped the Commonwealth, is its location; it is within an easy drive to half of the nation’s population, and Pennsylvania is now the fifth-most visited state in the nation — averaging about 138 million visitors.
(Want to know more about tourism in Pennsylvania, go ahead and click on Rock The Capital.)
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