This week, the Puerto Rico Statistics Institute updated their Registrations and Occupancy Report in Lodgings Endorsed by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC). In this document we observe that during the calendar year of 2017 (January through November), the total guests arrival consisted of 2,163,460, whereas in the calendar year of 2018 (January thru November) was of 1,592,063.

This represents a -26.4% decrease in lodgings. Similarly, during these years the island achieved an occupancy rate of 72.5% in 2017 and 72.91% in 2018, representing a 0.45% increase. Moreover, the average daily rate consisted of $147.11 in 2017 when in 2018 it consisted of $153.80, representing a $6.69 increase in lodging fees.

It is important to denote that the total arrival guests in the metropolitan area toped at 1,314,168 in 2017 calendar year (January to November), where it barely reached 992,954 for 2018 calendar year (January to November), making a -24.4% decrease.

Whereas the total arrival of guests in the non-metropolitan area toped at 849,292 in 2017 (January to November) and 599,109 in 2018 (January to November), causing a -29.5% decrease.

Similarly, we also observed that the average daily rate for metropolitan area lodgings in 2017 consisted of $141.54 and of $161.94 on 2018. While the non-metropolitan area experienced an average rate of $151.75 during 2017 and $146.80 during 2018.

Therefore, we use this evidence to state that as tourism declines on a year-to-year basis, the hotel market has opted for an increase in their fees in order to maintain within an operable margin of profits.

Similarly, the gap between the development of tourism that there exists between the metropolitan area and the non-metropolitan area widens, because even though both have suffered a decrease in tourism, the non-metropolitan area has undoubtedly been the most affected of them both. And, as the metropolitan has opted for an increase in their lodging prices to maintain some profits, the non-metropolitan area has decided to attract more tourists by lowering their prices.

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