April 22, 2024

Strong ‘blue collar’ business demand boosts Travelodge trading

Good ‘blue collar’ business demand has helped Travelodge deliver a record trading performance in the third quarter.

The budget chain said it saw a significant increase in demand post July 19, when Covid restrictions were lifted in the UK, and also benefited from the reduced VAT rate.  

“The budget segment continues to recover ahead of the total UK market and Travelodge has continued its seven-year track record of outperformance against the market segment,” it said in a statement.

“Whilst forecasting remains a challenge, and we continue to face a range of possible outcomes, we expect to return to 2019 RevPAR levels during 2022, driven by continued leisure and ‘blue collar’ business demand offsetting a slower recovery in ‘white collar’ corporate demand.”

Overall UK like-for-like RevPAR for the third quarter was up 11.8% on 2019 levels, approximately 17.8pts ahead of the STR MSE benchmark competitive segment. 

EBITDA (adjusted) for the third quarter was £87.2m, compared to £57.5m in 2019 and £4.1m in 2020.

Travelodge said it expects to return to 2019 RevPAR levels during 2022, with sustained ‘blue-collar’ business demand, and strong leisure demand offsetting a more gradual recovery in ‘white collar’ corporate demand. 

It plans to open only six new hotels in 2022, lower than its long-run averages, as new deals were impacted by Covid-19 in 2020.