Sir, – I have spent the past number of weeks, indeed months, searching for some staycation bargains. Alas, there are not many to be found. Hotels, in particular, are expensive this summer. I worry that the hotels, and others in the hospitality sector, may be missing an opportunity here.
Whatever about this summer, this time next year, fingers crossed, people will be more inclined to board the planes again and to jet off to sunnier and less expensive climates. This may be the last opportunity, therefore, that the sector has to convince people that offshore holidays should not be their instinctive starting position. This summer they can plant a seed that staycations can become a permanent, or more common, occurrence. But I fear that opportunity is being spurned.
Room rates continue to increase significantly, and I can just hear the argument. “We need to make up for lost time and revenue.” Yes, revenues have, sadly, dropped hugely. But passing that burden onto the customers, the people willing to heed the sector’s request to “support local businesses” and to stay on the island this summer, is not only unfair but it’s also short-sighted.
The sector has this last chance to prove to the public that they can enjoy quality and cost-effective holidays on our beautiful island (even without the guaranteed sunshine). But, given the extortionate prices being charged this year, why would they stay next year? It’s a pity and a chance missed. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Perhaps more people would holiday in Ireland if the prices for accommodation were not so expensive. – Yours, etc,
NIALL P HOGAN,