Report: Arizona Hotels Expected To Be Down 11,000 Jobs In 2021

Published: Thursday, July 22, 2021 - 11:50am
Updated: Thursday, July 22, 2021 - 4:40pm

While leisure travel is rebounding, the hotel industry says nearly 500,000 jobs will not return by year’s end.

The American Hotel and Lodging Association estimates Arizona will be down nearly 11,000 direct jobs like housekeepers and front-desk agents. That’s an 18.3% drop since 2019. 

The areas estimated to suffer the largest percentage of coronavirus-induced job losses are:

  • Washington, D.C. down 43.1%
  • New York down 37.9%
  • Illinois down 35.2%
  • Massachusetts down 30.2%
  • Hawaii down 28.8%

A July 2021 report released by the association said hotels across the United States directly employed more than 2.3 million people in 2019. They are expected to end 2021 down 20% with 1.86 million employees. The industry estimates 2019 employment levels will not return until at least 2023.

Nationally, hotel occupancy is expected to average 56% this year, down 10 percentage points from pre-pandemic levels. While some full-service hotels can break even at 50% occupancy, the association said it does not account for mortgage debt service costs, which leave most hotel below their break-even point.

The association and United Here, a labor union representing hospitality workers, are lobbying Congress to pass the Save Hotel Jobs Act. The legislation to provide new grants and tax credits to help pay hotel employees and ensure safe workplaces. 

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