STR Tracking for Sonoma County
Things to Note:

  • 49 of the county’s 112 hotels report to STR
  • In April, 13 of those 49 hotels were closed
  • The average from other destinations includes: Napa, Palm Springs, Monterey, South Lake Tahoe, and Vallejo/Napa Valley
  • For more information on how data is calculated due to hotel closures, please refer to this document
Smith Travel Research (STR) is the recognized leader in hospitality industry benchmarking around the globe. Powered by the world's largest hotel data sample, they deliver confidential data, accurate and actionable insights, and comprehensive solutions to empower decisions. Discover how STR collects data, how it is calculated, and a glossary of terms, by clicking here
Destination Analysts Key Findings to Know
From the 5/25 Destination Analysts' Coronavirus Travel Sentiment Report
  • American travelers continue a slow march towards feeling safer

  • Air travel, non-private transportation and indoor attractions are seen as the least safe aspects of the common travel journey

  • A majority of travelers still do not yet feel that either a hotel or Airbnb/vacation home rental experience are very safe right now

  • Only 5.9% reported taking a Memorial Day weekend trip

  • Younger travelers will very likely be key to many destinations’ and travel providers’ recovery
Today's Takeaways
From SCT's director of marketing systems & insights, Ariane Hiltebrand
It is interesting to see from this week’s travel sentiment study by Destination Analysts that although people are still as excited about traveling soon (45%) as in the last weeks, we are now seeing more uncertainty towards summer and fall travel. Without a clear reopening timeline for hotels and tourism from local and state governments, people are now tentatively planning increasingly further out such as September or October or even postponing travel plans to 2021. Easing this uncertainty as soon as possible will greatly impact people’s travel plans for the remainder of the year and help salvage the summer travel season to some degree, as we can see from the news coming from Europe and Asia.

Another factor that will greatly influence the ability to travel is the state of personal finances. As per DA’s latest research, travel as a budget priority for the next 12 months dropped from 70.6% during winter 2019/2020 to 27% now. In terms of destination type interest for the coming months, small towns and rural destinations lead now and we see upward trends for parks and mountain destinations. Sonoma County is certainly positioned well in this destination type preference.
Similarly, we continue to see leading interest in road trips to regional destinations. Accommodation providers still have a long road ahead to make sure people feel safe. Currently travelers indicate they feel a little safer in vacation rentals, since they can be on their own away from crowds, but hotels seem to have an edge with cleaning and safety protocols. Communicating these protocols and meeting people’s perceived needs will be critical for establishing functioning tourist travel again. At this point millennial travelers are emerging in the research as the first wave of leisure travelers and with a preference for nature destinations, road trips, and vacation rentals.