DC hotels resume pre-pandemic operations

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The hospitality industry, which has been among the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, has largely resumed pre-pandemic operations in DC

The hospitality industry, which has been one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, has largely resumed pre-pandemic operations, according to DC’s CFO’s office, and most of that rebound only happened in recent months.

Hospitality jobs have also returned.

From March 2020 to summer 2021, hotels were hampered by a significant drop in business and leisure travel and restrictions on group sizes. Many otherwise lucrative conventions for DC hotels have been canceled.



But starting in April, the city said hotel occupancy rates began to rise, as both business travelers and vacationers returned.

Hotel occupancy in DC is now averaging 70%, consistent with pre-COVID levels, and hotel room rates are back to 2019 levels.

In May, the most recent data available, the accommodations industry in DC employed 10,500 people, 88.6% more than in May 2021. Foodservices now employ nearly 46,000 in DC, an increase of 48.3%.

It’s good for the city. Hotel sales tax revenue fell from near zero in April 2020 to just below the 2018-19 average.

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