5 things to know: 16 October 2020
 
5 things to know: 16 October 2020
16 OCTOBER 2020 9:41 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • What Europe’s second wave means for US tourists
  • Wynn Resorts cuts Encore’s operating schedule
  • HAMA: Brands less flexible than third parties in crisis
  • USTA shows support of hospitality jobs bill
  • Travel survey shows Americans cautiously optimistic

What Europe’s second wave means for U.S. tourists: Over the past 10 days, Europe has recorded 1 million new confirmed COVID-19 cases, setting a record for the continent and surpassing the U.S. in cases per capita, The Washington Post reports. This lessens the chance of U.S. tourists flocking to Europe anytime soon.

Tourists have been mostly absent in Europe since 17 March after the European Union closed its external borders. On 11 July, borders opened to travelers from several countries not including the U.S. It is unlikely Europe will open its borders to leisure travelers from the U.S. in the near future “as the outbreak remains uncertain on both sides of the pond,” The Post reports.

Experts note Europe’s second wave “may not change earlier estimations that U.S. travel may return in spring or summer 2021.”

Wynn Resorts cuts Encore’s operating schedule: Wynn Resorts announced earlier this week it is cutting the operating schedule of the 2,034-room Encore property on the Las Vegas Strip to four days a week due to “weak customer demand,” the Las Vegas Sun reports.

The resort closed on Monday and will remain closed until 2 p.m. on 22 October. After that, it will only open Thursdays through Sundays. The company said this new schedule will be in effect indefinitely until consumer demand for Las Vegas increases.

How this will affect employees of the Encore is not yet known.

“We have not yet determined the number of employees who will be furloughed as a result of the reduction in operating hours,” a Wynn Resorts representative said in a statement.


HAMA: Brands less flexible than third parties in crisis: Members of the Hospitality Asset Managers Association in a recent survey said third-party managers have been more flexible partners than brands through the downturn brought on by the pandemic. Asset managers also believe lenders’ patience is thinning, writes Hotel News Now’s Sean McCracken.

Larry Trabulsi, EVP of CHMWarnick, said communication has been easier with third-party managers than with the brands.

“The third-party companies were able to have some dialogue and get responses back a little bit more quickly than we could on the brand managed side, who were, quite frankly, putting out fires all across the country in numerous places,” he said. “The question was if your fire was hot enough for them or not.”

USTA shows support of hospitality jobs bill: The U.S. Travel Association on Thursday issued a statement applauding the introduction of the U.S. Senate’s bipartisan Hospitality and Commerce Job Recovery Act of 2020, which would “provide comprehensive relief and recovery measures for the convention, trade show, entertainment, travel and hospitality industries and their workers.”

USTA’s EVP of Public Affairs and Policy Tori Emerson Barnes said in the statement: “The leisure and hospitality industry has suffered nearly 40% of all job losses nationwide, and a staggering 50% of all travel-supported jobs will be lost by the end of December if there is no federal intervention to provide aid. The bill’s targeted approach to providing tax incentives would ensure that these hard-hit businesses—including those in the meetings, events and entertainment segments—get the help they so desperately need to recover from this crisis.”

The bill has been introduced by U.S. Senators Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada and Kevin Cramer of North Dakota.


Travel survey shows Americans cautiously optimistic: A recent survey from AAA Travel shows while Americans are making leisure travel plans through the end of 2021, they continue to be “cautiously optimistic about those future plans,” according to a news release.

The survey reports 67% of U.S. adults who are planning vacations by the end of this year are unsure of the likelihood they will actually take that vacation.

“As a result, some are opting for spur-of-the-moment travel decisions as they take coronavirus implications into account. According to AAA’s survey, one in five who are planning a trip before the end of this year but haven’t booked yet expect to do so within one week of traveling. AAA advises these travelers to take proper precautions to help keep themselves and others safe while away from home,” the release states.

Compiled by Dana Miller.

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