Hotels prices see global rise in 2014: Report

During the first half of 2014, hotel rates were 4% higher than during the same period in the...

During the first half of 2014, hotel rates were 4% higher than during the same period in the previous year. (dotshock /


, Last Updated: 7:37 PM ET

The worldwide average rate for a hotel room during the first half of 2014 was 4 percent higher compared to the same period in 2013, according to the hotel booking website.

On the whole, only a few regions represented an exception to the upward trend in hotel rates. This is the fifth consecutive year that prices have risen, according to

The Caribbean saw the largest spike ever recorded in the website's Hotel Price Index (HPI), which has followed the trends of the industry since 2004. On average, customers at the region's hotels paid 6 percent more during the first half of this year than in the same period in 2013.

Europe and the Middle East, meanwhile, saw a 5 percent price increase, which according to EMEA Vice President Matthew Walls reflects the "fastest growth rate we have seen for six years."

Conversely, hotel rates in the Asia-Pacific region were fairly stable compared with the previous year. The region remains a relatively affordable option for travelers. Australia in particular has become more attractive to budget-conscious tourists due to the weakening dollar.

In the foreword to the latest HPI, president Johan Svanstrom observes that some of the major changes seen in the first half of this year may be attributed to overall economic recovery, currency fluctuations, major sporting events (the World Cup in Brazil and the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia) and civil unrest.

In Egypt and Thailand, for example, a decrease in tourists and a corresponding drop in hotel rates may be attributed to perceived political instability. "Spain appeared to gain most out of the troubles in these areas," noted Svanstrom, "with inbound tourism in the first six months up 7 percent to more than 28 million visitors and prices paid in the Costas and island groups rising accordingly."

In the first half of 2013, hotel rates rose by 3 percent on average compared to the same period in 2012, according to the previous HPI. The Asia-Pacific region was the only region to become more affordable over the period, recording a drop of 2 percent.