The accommodation industry has had to completely reshape its predictions for the future. The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted the industry significantly due to international and domestic travel disruption and a range of ensuing safety measures. All parts of the industry have been affected, from hotels, motels and resorts, to bed and breakfasts and home-sharing platforms like Airbnb. Some of the current trends resulting from the pandemic are contactless technology, high hygiene standards, and increased domestic travel or “staycations”. These days, consumers are more aware than ever of the importance of planetary and personal health and, due to a lack of connection, are seeking more authentic experiences than before. As a result, larger trends that were already reshaping the accommodation industry have been further cemented as a result of the pandemic. These include digitization, sustainability, and the demand for authentic, personalized experiences.

Industry Insights

Accommodation, Restaurants & Nightlife – global 2020


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Market size

Accommodation industry reached its peak prior to COVID-19 pandemic
Market size of the hotel and resort industry worldwide from 2011 to 2019, with a forecast for 2020 and 2021 (in trillion U.S. dollars)
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Globalization, the rise of the online market, and increasing ease of mobility means tourism has grown exponentially over the past decade. It therefore comes as no surprise that this has also caused growth in the accommodation industry. This is particularly the case in its largest sector, the hotel and resort industry, which has seen a steady upward curve in its market size during this time. The largest decline in size was seen during the coronavirus pandemic.

Accommodation industry worldwide
Accommodation industry in Europe
Accommodation industry in the U.S.

Market segments

Home-sharing’s impact on the accommodation industry
Nights and experiences booked with Airbnb from 2017 to 2020 (in millions)
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With home-sharing services becoming ever more popular with consumers, more traditional modes of accommodation are facing increasing competition. The sharing economy offers consumers the ability not only to stay in people’s homes, but also to make money by sharing their own homes. Competitive prices and lodging ranging from basic to luxury mean that other segments like hotels, hostels, traditional bed and breakfasts, and even campgrounds will need to rethink their business outlook.

Hotel industry worldwide
Camping and RV industry

Industry trends

Accommodation industry must adapt in the face of COVID-19
Public opinion on how to improve customer comfort levels in hotels after the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic worldwide as of May 2020
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As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, consumer needs have changed significantly. Suddenly, exceptional hygiene standards, contactless service, and enough space for social distancing have become essential requirements to those seeking overnight accommodation. Businesses have had to adapt quickly to these changing trends in order to survive. Many accommodation services are still struggling in the face of travel restrictions but, as more consumers turn to local travel, this may yet improve.

COVID-19: change in short-term rental bookings
COVID-19: impact on lodging industry
COVID-19: change in hotel occupancy

Industry leaders

Hotel companies dominate but Airbnb is hot on their heels
Sales revenue of selected leading hotel companies worldwide in 2020 (in billion U.S. dollars)
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When it comes to accommodation industry leaders, hotel companies take the top spots. Chains such as Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, and the Wyndham Hotel Group dominate in terms of revenue, units, and brand value. Meanwhile, Airbnb is currently the leader in the home-sharing market, with its revenue and bookings rising steadily up until the coronavirus outbreak.

Marriott International
Hilton Worldwide
Airbnb's revenue worldwide

Industry Definition

The accommodation industry is part of the wider hospitality industry. In its broadest definition, it encompasses many different sectors that offer overnight lodging services. These sectors include hotels, hostels, short-term rentals, holiday homes, RV parks and camping services, and more. There are also other industries working in conjunction with the accommodation industry, for example, food and drink services, and wellness and spas. These individual sectors are subject to different trends - one example that is relevant to all of them is the rise of digitization and the online market. Trend topics can also be more specific, contactless service in the hotel industry being one. These emerging trends are sure to shape the industry's outlook, and the long-term impact of the coronavirus is expected to change the face of the accommodation industry for years to come.


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