Thursday, September 23

Slow recovery: 70% hotel unemployment puts New York in the national moat

Temporarily closed hotel in Midtown East, NYC.

Photo: Andrés Correa Guatarasma / Courtesy

Although according to the Mayor of NYC, hotels in the city have already recovered their pre-pandemic occupancy levels, a report indicates that unemployment in that industry at the state level remains at almost 40%, the second highest rate of loss among the regions. from the country.

And unemployment is much worse in the New York City (70%) than in the rest of the state. Hotels across NY added a total of 116,106 jobs in 2019, but last year the number dropped to 69,088; that is, a loss of 47,018 jobs during the pandemic, which tourism and business travel paralyzed.

Recovery has been slower for New York hotels than any other area of the nation except Washington DC, according to the American Hotel and Lodging Association’s mid-year analysis (AHLA).

It is emerging that employment in hotels in New York state will only increase to 72,077 jobs in 2021, still 44,029 less than before the pandemic (-37.9%). That’s nearly double the 20.8% average job loss for all hotels in the United States, according to the report. Only Washington DC fares worse, with a projected drop of 43% for this year.

By comparison, hotel jobs are down 21.5% in Florida, 26.8% in California, 28.8% in Hawaii and 35.2% in Illinois. In neighboring states, there are 30.2% fewer Massachusetts hotel jobs, 22.7% in New Jersey, 28.3% in Connecticut and 23.6% in Pennsylvania.

“We have a desperate situation. They have beaten us, “summed up the president of the New York City Hotel Association. (HANYC), Vijay Dandapani. In NYC that industry employed 55,000 workers before the pandemic, but now only 15,000 have permanent jobs, a loss of nearly 70% of jobs, he cited New York Post.

“While the demand for leisure travel is increasing, business and group trips, the industry’s largest source of income and a major source of employment, they will take much longer to recover ”, AHLA said in its analysis. “The pandemic has been devastating for the hotel industry workforce, ending 10 years of growth in hotel employment ”.

“These figures are only direct jobs at hotel properties, such as housekeepers and front desk agents, and do not include total job losses from other industries that are supported by the hotel industry, including restaurants, retail stores, attractions and live services
events, transportation, suppliers of small businesses and supplies for hotels, among many others ”, highlights the report. A typical hotel generates 26 additional jobs in the community for every 10 people directly employed, according to a study by Oxford Economics.

During the pandemic, 60 city hotels became homeless shelters to help prevent the transmission of COVID-19 and reduce homelessness. But now they are being reassigned amid falling local infection rates and increased vaccination, although some oppose it and legal disputes have arisen.

In an attempt to promote tourism, the mayor’s office in April launched a $ 30 million promotional campaign, despite the rise of insecurity in residential and tourist areas and the Metro. I also know eliminated from June to August the 5.875% occupancy tax normally paid by tourists when staying in the hotels in all five boroughs.

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