Holiday reservations remain strong in western mountain resorts
December 18, 2016
Despite concluding a contentious presidential election at the beginning of the month and experiencing atypically warm and dry weather through the middle and end of the month, aggregated winter bookings among participating western mountain resorts from November through April are up 2.7 percent and revenues are up 10.4 percent compared to the same time last year according to the Mountain Market Briefing released yesterday by Denver-based DestiMetrics.
However, as of Nov. 30, actual bookings made in November for arrivals during the six winter months were down 7.9 percent compared to bookings made in November 2015 for the same months last winter. November bookings for arrivals in the month of November were down a dramatic 25.9 percent and down 15.3 percent compared to the same time last year. The shift in bookings to later in December is being attributed to the calendar's timing of Christmas Day and New Year's on weekends and shifting travel dates as a result.
"While overall winter season bookings remain strong, the early season softness is likely a combination of the initial uncertainty surrounding the presidential election and the warm, dry weather that persisted through much of November at most western mountain destinations," explained Ralf Garrison, director of DestiMetrics.
"But we did see seasonable temperatures and appreciable snowfall arrive at many resorts near the end of the month and that should encourage skiers and riders to once again start booking their winter vacations," he added.
"Many resorts and ski towns were watching carefully during the month of November as we monitored consumer and economic reactions to the outcome of the election while keeping a watchful eye on early winter weather patterns during the remainder of the month," Garrison said.