Hilton has closed approximately 150 hotels totaling about 33,000 rooms in China as the country reels from the outbreak of COVID-19, the official name of coronavirus per the World Health Organization.
If the outbreak lasts three to six months, with an additional 3- to 6-month recovery period, Christopher J. Nassetta, CEO, Hilton said, during a post-earning conference call, that the company can take a $25 million to $50 million hit.
The numbers are staggering. According to STR, there was a hotel occupancy decline of 75 percent in Mainland China at the end of January, and the situation is just worsening.
Hilton isn’t the only company closing hotels. Best Western has had to close many of its properties in China as well, and other hotel companies have altered their cancellation and change policies for Greater China.
The hotel industry isn’t the only one reeling from the coronavirus. Airlines and cruise companies have restricted travel to and from China as well. In addition, one of the world’s largest trade shows, the annual Mobile World Congress (MWC 2020), scheduled to be held in Barcelona this month, has been cancelled, a huge blow not only for the city but for the 100,000 attendees that attend each year.
For a more comprehensive look at travel and the COVID-19, click here and here.