As the national vaccine rollout progresses, Las Vegas hotels are filling up again after a year-long recession. It shows that the recovery could be happening faster than expected.
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, weekend hotel occupancy rates in Las Vegas are about 95%, according to a study released this week by Morgan Stanley. This figure is promising for Southern Nevada, which is reliant on tourism.
The midweek occupancy rate is between 50 and 60 percent, significantly higher than the pandemic average of less than 30 percent. Because of low customer demand, many resorts stopped taking hotel reservations in the middle of the week last year.
This, along with other measures, was interpreted by gaming analysts as indicating that the increase in visitor volume points to a faster-than-expected recovery.
According to the Morgan Stanley survey, tourists continue to choose Las Vegas as a destination. Expected room reservations at some hotel-casinos are “stronger than current occupancy.”
According to the newspaper, foot traffic on the Strip in March was nearly 60% of what it had been before the first COVID-19 cases emerged.
“Assume an entire country cooped up for months with cabin fever and stimulus checks,” a Review-Journal Facebook user wrote. “Adult Disneyland has never been more necessary.”
Employees vaccination under pressure
Officials at the casino are reluctant to declare victory. A spike in COVID-19 cases, or the presence of coronavirus variants, could reawaken public concern about travel.
State gaming regulators are also placing pressure on hotel-casinos to demonstrate progress in vaccinating their workers.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board will have the authority to set casino floor capacity limits beginning May 1. Currently, the state-mandated potential is 50%.
Earlier this month, gaming regulators said that when determining whether to raise the capacity limit, they would consider the initiative to vaccinate hospitality employees.