Major events drive hotel occupancy rates to record-breaking highs
A hotel booking bonanza as festival tickets fast sell-out is driving occupancy rates in Adelaide to record-breaking highs.
Adelaide is celebrating the best 10-week outlook for any event on record, with 77 per cent of Adelaide hotel rooms already sold for the Saturday of the inaugural AFL Gather Round – smashing the previous record of 57 per cent sold at 10 weeks out from New Year’s Eve 2022.
Tickets to the festival of footy are flying out the door, with three games now sold-out – including the Lions v North Melbourne at Mount Barker and a double header at Adelaide Oval on the Saturday.
An influx of visitors to South Australia are also expected for the March long weekend, as WOMADelaide celebrates unprecedented ticket sales, with all 3-day, 4-day and Saturday tickets sold-out more than one month out from the event.
Almost half the festival sales are coming from visitors to South Australia, including international. Sales for the remaining days Friday/Sunday and Monday are continuing at unprecedented levels.
The demand for tickets has translated to hotel bookings, with average occupancy over the festival already at 79 per cent –– up 27 percentage points on the same time last year, one month out from the March long weekend.
At 11 weeks out from the nation’s first LIV Golf tournament, forward bookings show 53 per cent of hotel rooms are already booked for the Saturday of the event – compared to just 20 per cent for the same time last year.
Hotel occupancy highlights (source: STR):
- Best 10-week outlook for any event on record, with 77 per cent of the 10,276 hotel rooms available already booked for the Saturday of the AFL Gather Round. The previous 10-week outlook record-high was 57 per cent for New Year’s Eve 2022.
- At more than one month out, forward bookings show average occupancy over the WOMADelaide weekend of 79 per cent – up 27 percentage points on the same time in 2022.
- The Friday of WOMADelaide is already at 80 per cent of hotel rooms sold, and Saturday at 82 per cent – at more than one month out. This compares to 52 and 56 per cent respectively, at the same time last year.
- At 11 weeks out from LIV Golf Adelaide, 53 per cent of the 10,276 hotel rooms available are already booked out for the Saturday of the tournament. This compares to just 22 per cent at the same time last year.
Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison said Adelaide hotels are "filling at a rate of knots" thanks to the state's blockbuster calendar of events.
"Tickets are selling out for WOMADelaide’s return to a truly international event this year, and it’s boosting hotel occupancy up 27 per cent on the same time last year – nearly 3,000 extra hotel rooms," Minister Bettison said.
"The AFL Gather Round has already hit the record books – with the best 10-week outlook for hotel bookings ahead of an event we’ve ever seen. In fact, it’s not only an all-time high but it’s smashed the previous record out of the (foot)ballpark.
"There is no doubt, eyes are on South Australia with new events like the Gather Round and LIV Golf, and it’s creating real wins for our tourism and hospitality sector. When ticket sales translate to tourists in our city and bookings in our hotels – that’s exactly why we go out hard to secure major events and invest in our calendar year-round."
Adelaide Oval Stadium Management Authority CEO Nick Addison said: "People around Australia are recognising that Adelaide is where you come for unmissable events, and we’re proud that Adelaide Oval is at the epicentre of that.
"Ticket sales for the inaugural AFL Gather Round are going fast, and there’s also already a huge amount of excitement around the NRL State of Origin and Ed Sheeran and also the Pink concert which goes on sale this week.
"Oval Hotel has established itself as a unique destination and we enjoy strong occupancy throughout the year, but major events like these are helping take things to another level."
Australian Hotels Association SA CEO, Ian Horne said events and festivals give people a reason to visit the state and spend.
"This is a direct hit for our hotels, restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes – who we know will do a roaring trade off the back of our packed events calendar," he said.
"We’re already seeing the impact that events have on hotel bookings – our upcoming events and festivals are driving occupancy rates in Adelaide to record-breaking highs, making us the envy of other states."