With travel only just returning, Hotels.com examined searches on its website and mobile app over the previous three years to determine the most in-demand and out-of-touch amenities and features.
“The pandemic impacted nearly every aspect of our lives, including how we search for our next hotel stay,” said Mel Dohmen, senior brand manager at Hotels.com. “The amenities we love and are looking for in 2022 reflect everything we’ve felt and experienced over the past few years. From hotels that helped us relax and take the edge off to those that complemented new hobbies like cooking and skiing, there’s a lot to learn about where travelers are going this year based on how they search for the perfect hotel stay.”
The following are some of the key results from the 2022 Hotels.com Amenity Report:
1 Bathtub searches are on the rise
Bathtubs were the most-searched hotel amenity during the peak of the pandemic, whether it was a cry for help or just good old-fashioned self-care. So far this year, searches have increased by 25 per cent over last year, and interest in spas has risen by 35 per cent.
2 Skiing is a new interest
The pandemic drove everyone to reconnect with their outdoor side, so it’s not unexpected that searches for ski-in/ski-out hotels are at an all-time high, up 50 per cent since 2019. Properties with ski shuttles and storage have also seen a 20 per cent increase in interest.
3 Cooking at home and in the hotel
Kitchens were the second most sought-after amenity in 2021. Kitchen searches are up 15% year-over-year, indicating that the trend continues.
4 No Wi-Fi? No problem
This year, Zoom meetings and doom scrolling aren’t on the agenda, as searches for places with free Wi-Fi are down 50 per cent since the outbreak.
5 No business here
Travelers are sick of working from home and have discovered that they don’t want to work anywhere else. As a result, searches for properties with business amenities are down 40 per cent from 2019.
6 Car parking
This year, searches for properties with free parking have increased by 70 per cent, as travelers continue to prefer places within driving distance.
You are not alone if you can’t take another 10-hour drive. So far this year searches for residences with free airport transfers have increased by 105 per cent.
7 Family vacations are back
Families have been missing out on important vacation time together. The number of searches for properties with cribs (+65 per cent), childcare (+45 per cent), and connecting rooms (+20 per cent) has climbed by double digits.
Let’s not forget about the furry kids. In 2022, there is a 35 per cent increase in demand for pet-friendly accommodations.
8 Working out on vacation
During the pandemic, working out wasn’t a key concern. Compared to 2019, gym searches were down 30 per cent last year. However, in 2022, tourists are resuming their wellness routines, with a 65 per cent increase in gym searches year over year.
9 Breakfast is back
Since the beginning of time, the #1 amenity has been complimentary breakfast. However, the pandemic knocked this fan favourite down a notch, with hotels substituting pre-packaged grab-and-go products for heated buffets. Nevertheless, breakfast is returning this year, and searches have increased by 75 per cent.
Hotels.com also looked into the most popular travel spots and facilities to discover how the 50 states and Washington, D.C. found the ideal stay. The following are some of the most critical regional trends:
Star ratings: Four-star properties with free parking are preferred by Northeasterners. In comparison, Southerners are content with 2.5-star accommodations as long as they include complimentary breakfast.
Amenities: Pet-friendly homes are sought by Arizonans and Californians, while vacationers in Maryland, Louisiana, and Ohio want to relax in a bathtub.
Destinations: Midwesterners favor midsize cities such as Omaha and Oklahoma City to urban areas. Residents from the Southwest (Arizona, Nevada) are the most likely to select California.
*Hotels.com amenity report compared internal search data on US sites and mobile app from January 1 – February 7, 2022 with the same time period in 2019, 2020 and 2021.
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