Recently, Ctrip.com shared that many leisure and business travellers were delaying trips until after the Beijing Olympic Games.
For their part, hotels, too, have acknowledged that the number of visitors has been below expectations.
"We are not getting as many guests during this Olympic period as everyone expected," reportedly said Mary Ma, sales and marketing department manager, Red Hotel Beijing. "Maybe it is because more hotels have opened; maybe it's because hotels have greatly increased their room rates."
According to businessweek.com, located one block north of the stadium and arena scheduled to host the Olympic soccer and boxing matches, the hotel had a location that seemed a sure moneymaker for the Beijing games. So last year, the Red Hotel invested $1.5 million to nearly double the number of rooms to 75.
In the first seven months of the year, Beijing received 9.2 percent fewer tourists than the same period last year. Hoteliers are blaming China's tighter visa policy enacted in May for the drop in tourists during the Olympics.
The report also highlighted that one reason for the drop is a decline in ordinary business travel, as Chinese out-of-towners try to avoid scheduling meetings in Beijing during the Games.
"The benefits of the number of people attending the games is expected to be largely offset by reduced business activity during the Olympic period," David Sun, chief executive officer of Home Inn & Hotels Management (HMIN), China's largest budget hotel chain, recently told investors. The company's New York-traded American depositary receipts are down 53 percent so far this year.
Recently, in an interview with EyeforTravel.com, Roy Graff, Director of Business Development, Sportsworld said last year everyone was optimistic but the reality is that the Olympics and other events in 2008 have served to constrict the growth in tourism flows to and from China and therefore in profits to companies engaged in the Chinese tourism industry.
EyeforTravel's Travel Distribution and Sales China 2008 Conference