North Rhine-Westphalia: Industry association: hospitality industry close to pre-crisis level for the first time

The hospitality industry has suffered greatly in the pandemic.

North Rhine-Westphalia: Industry association: hospitality industry close to pre-crisis level for the first time

The hospitality industry has suffered greatly in the pandemic. With the elimination of protective measures, things are clearly looking up again. In addition, there is ideal beer garden weather. According to the association, things went particularly well in May. However, this does not yet apply to all companies.

Neuss (dpa / lnw) - Fully occupied tables on restaurant terraces and in beer gardens also thanks to the very sunny weather: According to an association assessment in May, the hospitality industry in North Rhine-Westphalia has come close to the pre-crisis level for the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic. Including price increases, the companies participating in the latest survey recorded an average small increase in sales of two percent compared to May 2019, said the spokesman for the German Hotel and Restaurant Association (Dehoga) NRW, Thorsten Hellwig, the dpa. Adjusted for inflation, according to the association, sales are still well below the figures for 2019.

The association's survey is not representative, but the regular surveys show a small nominal increase in sales compared to 2019 for the first time since the pandemic began, as the spokesman explained. For the first five months of 2022 taken together, the average drop in sales at the companies surveyed was still 15 percent. Nevertheless, there is more reason for optimism in gastronomy and the hotel industry than at the beginning of the year. The industry is counting on the positive development stabilizing, "on trust and security returning and on private tourism, but above all business travel tourism, picking up even more."

"Things are improving, but not for everyone," emphasized Hellwig. The positive trend is primarily driven by private demand, which jumped sharply after the corona restrictions were lifted. Just over half of the companies recently rated consumer demand as very good or good. In the case of business customers, on the other hand, this is only the case for a good third of those surveyed. The terraces and beer gardens are much better filled than the lobbies in business hotels. "The gap between sales winners and sales losers remains large," explained Hellwig. But a clear upward trend can also be seen in the business customer segment.

As the Dehoga NRW further stated in its latest survey, the companies are most concerned about the sharp rise in food and energy prices. Almost two thirds of the companies surveyed are suffering from an acute shortage of employees.

The State Statistical Office wants to publish the April sales of the industry in the coming week. In March 2022, the NRW hospitality industry turned over twice as much as a year earlier, but almost a third less than in March 2019, as the state office had recently announced. In detail, according to the official statistics, sales in March 2022 in the accommodation sector were 41.6 percent and in the catering sector 23.4 percent below the level of March 2019.

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