Business Travel, Conventions, Office Occupancy Stuck in Collapse: Been so Long, People Forgot What Old Normal Was

Hotel business travel revenues expected to be down by 80% at top 20 destinations in 2021.

By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.

Even as American leisure travelers have been out in force, for US hotels, the all-important and lucrative business travel revenues – corporate, group, government, and other commercial travel – are expected to be down by $59 billion in 2021 from 2019, according to the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) and Kalibri Labs today.

For the 20 largest destinations in the US, hotel business travel revenues are expected to collapse by 80% from $38 billion in 2019 to $7.6 billion in 2021, according to AHLA data.

The largest destination, the New York City metro, is expected to see an 88% collapse in annual hotel business travel revenues, from $4.6 billion in 2019 to a projected $531 million in 2021.

In Orlando, the second largest destination in 2019, annual hotel business travel revenues are expected to collapse by 81%, from $2.8 billion in 2019 to a projected $518 million in 2021.

The third largest destination, the Washington D.C. metro, is expected to see an 86% collapse in hotel business travel revenues, from $2.7 billion in 2019 to $371 million in 2021.

These are the largest 20 destinations by business travel hotel revenues in 2019, the projected year-total revenues for 2021, and the percentage difference:

20 Largest Business Travel Destinations Business Travel Hotel Revenue, Million $ % Plunge
2019 2021 projected
New York 4,560 531 -88%
Orlando 2,796 518 -81%
Washington, DC metro 2,741 371 -86%
Los Angeles 2,683 752 -72%
San Francisco 2,531 178 -93%
Chicago 2,528 346 -86%
Las Vegas 2,326 670 -71%
Boston 1,672 191 -89%
Atlanta 1,671 491 -71%
Dallas 1,611 460 -71%
San Diego 1,611 395 -76%
Hawaiian Islands 1,530 346 -77%
Phoenix 1,349 380 -72%
Miami 1,327 497 -63%
Houston 1,291 412 -68%
Seattle 1,241 193 -84%
San Jose 1,227 176 -86%
Anaheim 1,155 256 -78%
Denver 1,087 237 -78%
Nashville 981 238 -76%
Total 37,919 7,640 -80%

 

This analysis follows AHLA’s survey of business travelers, released two weeks ago, which found that, amid rising COVID-19 cases, 67% of business travelers were planning to take fewer trips, 52% were likely to cancel existing travel plans without rescheduling, and 60% were planning to postpone existing travel plans.

The fifth largest destination in the table above, San Francisco, is expected to see a 93% collapse in hotel business travel revenues, from $2.5 billion in 2019 to $178 million in 2021, according to AHLA.

At the Moscone Center, San Francisco’s convention center, there was hardly anything scheduled for the rest of the year to begin with – just four events. At least one of them, the 64th Annual International Auto Show in November, has already been cancelled.

Another, the 76th Annual Meeting of the ASSH (American Society for Surgery of the Head) is still scheduled for September 30 through October 2, but with a “stream-lined schedule” and an “online attendance option.”

The Cannabis Business Summit & Expo 2021 was supposed to take place in early August but was rescheduled for mid-December, and everyone is keeping their fingers crossed.

The SEMICON WEST conference and the Design Automation Conference (DAC) were supposed to take place jointly in February this year but were rescheduled for December.

So some conferences are starting to show up, and it appears they’re going to take place, but potential attendees are reluctant and organizers are leery.

This is the situation everywhere. Conference organizers are trying to get people together and put some souls into the vast convention centers, and they’re doing it, but it’s hard and slow.

The reluctance among businesses about sending employees to conferences and about even holding conferences is also reflected in still dismally low office attendance.

Across the US, companies had sill not returned in large numbers to the office, and official return-to-the-office dates announced by big companies – whatever format that return to the office would have taken, from 1 day a week to 5 days a week bell-to-bell – keeps getting pushed out.

Office occupancy, as measured by workers actually showing up at the office, struggled to recover from dreadfully low levels, but over the past two months has relapsed. According to Kastle Systems, the 10-city average has dropped to 31% of where it had been before the pandemic, meaning it’s down 69% from the Good Times:

The longer business travel and office occupancy are getting replaced by video calls and working from home, and the more people figure out how to make it work and be productive, and the more they adjust their lives around it, the harder it will be to ever return to the Old Normal.

Some of this business travel and some of this office occupancy will certainly return, but it is becoming increasingly doubtful that the Old Normal was even such a great idea to begin with, and there are now initiatives underway all around to figure out what some kind of new normal might look like.

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  82 comments for “Business Travel, Conventions, Office Occupancy Stuck in Collapse: Been so Long, People Forgot What Old Normal Was

  1. Anton says:

    You know, all of this telecommuting may actually be a net good for EVERYONE long term. Thing of how much money and energy it took to have all these business people zooming around instead of….you know, doing Zoom. My Wife for example works in public health internationally. She is doing multiple conferences this year, all of them remotely. In years past she would have had to fly to international destinations for most of them. Not only did that take her away from home and family, but it also meant a lot of greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming were spent on that travel. Jet fuel is not exactly environmentally friendly. Neither are long car drives or single serve meals. My point is, we are actually saving people a lot of time that they can spend with friends and family, we are also reducing the carbon footprint at least a little bit in the process. That should be embraced and double downed on.

    • Josh says:

      Historically I attend 1 IT conference a year. I like it for 2 reasons: (1) I can meet up with former colleagues in person (many of us attend the same conference) and (2) it is much easier to disconnect when you physically go someplace than if you just block out your calendar and attend a remote conference. I wouldn’t go to any conference in person now but last year when I tried to attend a conference remotely I barely saw 3 videos before I switched back to doing my day job. I think they will come back when it is safe to do so.

      • RightNYer says:

        Agreed, but conferences are actually productive, as you spent several days networking and socializing. It’s the flights across the country (or the world) for a two hour meeting that are a complete waste.

    • Nick Kelly says:

      It is common knowledge that conventions are mostly junkets, funded by an organization funded by membership fees. BTW: these are quite rare in serious, hard science and much more common in fields like insurance, boat sales, unionized librarians, firemen, etc. There is nothing evil about this, but they are essentially social / tribal bonding. See J K Galbraith on ‘The Meeting’ and its mega-extension, The Convention.

      The idea that their interruption by a public health emergency that has critically ill people waiting in their cars (Providence Center, Alaska) is of serious concern, is silly.

  2. AdamSmith says:

    Covid and Remote work is the culprit here. The entire model of travel, lodging, and conventions is going to be significantly destroyed by the point of no return change in how people do business and see business travel/entertainment.

    Just like the old pin strip suits the change will be cataclysmic over a short historical time.

    Las Vegas may not suffer as much given its special exception.

    • Joe Saba says:

      just looked at booking nice weekend for my wifes birthday at resort
      $279 nite++++++++++ so many other fees for services
      last year 3 day stay was $1,500
      shut them down = I DON”T CARE ANYMORE

  3. Michael Gorback says:

    I canceled my plans for a meeting next month. Somehow the idea of walking through crowded exhibition halls, sitting in large rooms full of people and wearing a mask on the airplane, in the convention center and the hotel is not an inducement to go to meetings. Social distancing is enforced and they take your temperature when you enter the building.

    I understand and appreciate the precautions but it’s a downer.

    I won’t miss seeing the pompous self-important meeting officers walking around with enough ribbons on their name tags to pass for a rear admiral.

    • Xavier Caveat says:

      Some conventions have been cancelled recently in Las Vegas, people are scared.

  4. LM says:

    Zoom is strange—big faces filling screens, too close and too far, an absence of body language, a self-watching that is truly absurd, and a total lack of the very human “feels in the room” is going to turn us all into misanthropes. It already is. I am not arguing thet the old normal was so great, only that the new normal is extremely isolating and yet another bizarre experiment whose outcomes we will realize for better or for worse doen the line.

    • Nick Kelly says:

      We know what worse is: lying in an ICU bed with a hole cut in your throat for the O2 tube. It is not bizarre during a pandemic to avoid gathering.
      They had this figured out during the Black Death (plague) without the benefit of science, which seems to be wasted on many with access to it.

      • Yahoo headline grabber, vaccinated woman dies of breakthru infection (she caught from an unvaccinated person). She had underlying, RA, but how may people out there have undiagnosed RA? Or semi-compromised immune systems? Now they are saying if you got your Vaxx last year you are at risk.

        • Michael Gorback says:

          The story makes no sense.

          RA doesn’t compromise your immune system. RA is an autoimmune disease where the body attacks itself.

          Treatment involves drugs that decrease the autoimmune response. Therefore, it’s the drugs you take for RA that compromise your immune system.

          Undiagnosed = not treated with immunosuppressive drugs.

      • ChangeMachine says:

        Hysteria check: Intubation represents a fraction of a fraction of cases. The Black Death killed 50% of Europe (and elsewhere).

        • OutsideTheBox says:

          CM

          So you’re rooting for the Black Death ?

          Do you minimize a womans’ concerns when she shares them with you ?

          Do you enjoy being callous ?

          Are you one of THOSE dismissive types who say that 1 in 500 Americans have died from COVID ….so what ?

          The rest of us are tired of that type.

        • ChangeMachine says:

          How do “the rest of you” feel about the explosion of young girls being peddled on my street since lockdowns etc began, or the doubling of homicide? There’s more to economics than your portfolio, OutsideTheBox”, and there’s more to morality than good intentions.

    • Shiloh1 says:

      I always try to have my dogs on the couch behind me on the video conferences.

  5. Swamp Creature says:

    Downtown Washington DC is like a ghost town. The only people you see after 5PM are homeless and panhandlers. I bring an extra wallet with some small bills to hand out. Sometimes I’ll give them money to get a snack at McDonalds.

    • Old School says:

      Hussman has good article this month as usual but at the end he gives an update on covid as he’s is doing research.

      If I remember correctly the spread is determined by three factors which are 1) how contagious the variant is 2) number of people with immunity 3) number of people you come in contact with. He says spikes are exponential on the way up and on the way down and this spike will soon be history whether more people are vaccinated or not. You will learn more in 5 minutes of reading than 5 months of main stream media.

      • Wolf Richter says:

        Old School,

        Be leery of hedge fund managers that suddenly become epidemiologists and doctors. They tend to say a lot of really stupid things, but they phrase them in a simple way to where it’s appealing and easy to understand.

        What happened in San Francisco is that after the indoor mask mandate went into effect in early August, the infection rates plunged. They’re now down by 70%. Hospitalizations also plunged, but they were low to begin with, and limited largely to the few remaining unvaccinated (80% of the eligible population is vaccinated in SF). Deaths are very low due very high levels of vaccinations. The unvaccinated are at risk though big time.

        If you look at the data from the outside, you’d think that the infection rates plunged on their own. But that’s BS. They plunged because of the indoor mask mandate and because people were more careful, and because we now have a vaccination mandate for indoor dining etc. What causes infection rates to plunge is crucial, but the chart alone doesn’t tell you that.

        • Nacho Bigly Libre says:

          Wasn’t there indoor mask mandate during Nov2020 – Jan2021 spike too? Just asking…

        • Wolf Richter says:

          Nacho Bigly Libre,

          You’re getting everything confused (which is OK, you don’t live here, and you’re not expected to remember all the details). There were practically no vaccinations at that time. And San Francisco had opened up in the fall, loosened up the mask mandates, etc., thinking that it had licked Covid. That’s when the infection rates took off. And people weren’t vaccinated.

          People forget just how effective these vaccines are, especially in combination with masks indoors. Now we have delta, and we have vaccines, and San Francisco is fully open, you just have to wear a mask indoors, and there is now a vaccine mandate for certain things indoors. Everything changes all the time, including the virus.

          Once the winter lockdown and mask requirements took effect, infection rates plunged, as you can see in the chart. Vaccinations didn’t massively start until Feb/Mar. I got in due to my age and was fully vaccinated by April 8. Many people had to wait a lot longer.

          Covid is no longer a problem in San Francisco. I know that people in Texas and Florida and Idaho can’t figure out how that worked, but that’s how it is.

        • whatever says:

          The OC has lower rates than SF, and no masks, no passports. Everyone acts normal here. Science and causality don’t come from one city data point and I can show areas that refute every SF datapoint, most notably Israel which is a world hotspot despite having both masking and high vaccination rates.

          If these things make you feel better go right ahead, your choice. After I got my vaccines I never gave COVID another thought, refuse to wear a mask, and don’t care if the person next to me is or isn’t, just like I don’t care if they are vaccinated for measles, polio and everything else I have. If I get it, well the survival rate is over 99% and I won’t live like a coward under a mask.

          Those who push the vaccine and then turn around and act like they don’t work are part of the problem of people refusing to do it. If you acted like they worked you’d convince a lot more people than threats. If you think they don’t work – and your mask fetish shows that you don’t – then why bother them?

        • Wolf Richter says:

          Kudos for getting vaccinated.

          Mask mandates are state-wide and include Orange County, though they kicked in earlier in San Francisco than at the state level.

          The 7-day average infection rate in Orange County: 502/day 7-day average

          You’re not citing reports coming out of Israel but headlines coming out of Zero Hedge. Read the reports coming out of Israel, you might actually learn something.

          Vaccines don’t create a plastic bubble around people. They add two layers of protection by helping your immune system fight off the virus: they fight off the infection; and if you do get infected, they fight off serious disease. But they’re not 100%. Masks indoors add another layer of protection for you and those around you. Masks are the simplest and cheapest way to fight off the virus. I’m so tired of this braindead anti-masker shit.

          Covid is now taking out about 1,500 unvaccinated people per day. That’s a rate of 150,000 per 100 days. That’s totally unnecessary. This is a preventable disease: vaccines and masks. But OK. They died for what they believed in. Fine with me.

        • Old School says:

          My main point was communication from the government has been extremely poor from the get go. It’s a pretty simple concept that you have two levers to control the spread of the virus 1) immunization and 2) containment. CDC seems to have done an especially poor job imho.

        • eg says:

          @whatever

          The vaccines do not confer sterilizing immunity. They are effective in preventing the worst health outcomes most of the time. This means even when you are fully vaccinated, you can still contract and transmit the virus.

          Refusal to wear a mask indoors around others under these circumstances is grossly irresponsible.

        • Paulo says:

          Nice to see some cold hard stats on this. Of course that is what we have grown to expect on WS. Appreciate the information. My nephew lives in the Bay Area and confirms most are just doing their best to be part of the solution. He has lost some friends along the way, the kind that risk everyone else’s health for their ‘freedoms’.

        • tfourier says:

          Ah yes, a guy with a graph.

          So a “case” definition where the diagnostic test has Type I Error rate of 50%+ and Type II Error rate is 90%+ in low prevalence environment. That graph means nothing. From a differential diagnosis point of view.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          tfourier,

          “So a “case” definition where the diagnostic test has Type I Error rate of 50%+ and Type II Error rate is 90%+ in low prevalence environment.”

          This is already total ignorant BS. San Francisco enters data into the 7-day average that I cited not when a positive test occurs but when that case is confirmed by a lab. It’s OK for you to not know this, but it’s not OK to spout off nonsense based on ignorance.

          I glanced through the rest of your diatribe, and it was a huge pile of BS, similar to the first line, and so I deleted it. Quit abusing my site to spread falsehoods.

        • joe2 says:

          Thanks Wolf for the hard data. Now if Biden could only make a rational fact based presentation like that it would do him a lot more good than his “running over the Governors” bravado.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          joe2,

          “if Biden could only make a rational fact based presentation like that it would do him a lot more good …”

          Yes, the information chaos is driving everyone nuts. There are too many moving parts. The virus and what we know keeps changing, and it is all very complex and confusing, and amid all this chaos, politicians are trying to give a simple message, and that just leads to more information chaos. I’m totally exasperated by all this and the politics of it.

      • Swamp Creature says:

        My view

        1. Vaccines work

        2. Social distancing works

        3. Staying outdoors works

        Cloth masks don’t work very well – they do help prevent sick people from infecting others indoors, but they don’t protect you from sick people who are unmasked and infected. Sick people should not be going out in public indoor spaces but they do all the time. The virus in airborn and goes right through the cloth masks in small enclosed areas. I would stay away from those venues if you want to avoid getting infected. Two of my masked friends are no linger with us.

        • Wisdom Seeker says:

          Keep in mind that a lot of “sick” (meaning: infected) people don’t even know they’re sick (because they don’t feel sick).

          Masking can be very helpful but only if people have good equipment (with filters) and know how to wear it (tight fit w/ nosepiece). You still have to minimize exposure but a good mask can buy you an extra 5-10x in protection.

          Note for Wolf – Alameda County website includes infection rates (per 100K population) for vax vs no-vax. The rate for vax is about 1/3 that of no-vax. But you can’t simply infer that “vax stops 2/3 of infections” because correlation isn’t causation and there’s a lot of underlying detail that matters, such as the demographics of vaxxed vs unvaxxed. Unvaxxed are in higher-density, higher-risk urban cores (not suburbs)… on the other hand vaxxed may be taking fewer precautions. And then there’s the whole question of what constitutes a “case”, how many cases never get detected, and so on.

          Speaking of confusing definitions: this week, thanks to The Atlantic, the liberals finally learned something that the conservatives figured out last summer: the definition of “COVID hospitalized” (and by extension “COVID deaths”) is not what you would think it is. The financial incentives in the medical industry don’t favor honest accounting. But while the vax may not be as good as we’d prefer, perhaps the virus also isn’t quite so bad as we thought.

          My general sense is that we know a lot more than we did a year ago but key bits of what the scientists think “we know” are most likely wrong. There’s too much data that doesn’t make sense, and too many scientists with preconceived ideas unable to see the truth.

          For the rest of us, unfortunately it’s trivially easy for people, especially media people, to confuse themselves (and thus the rest of us) with (cherry-picked) statistics. Toss in political agendas and financial motives and it’s hopeless.

          I only hope that future historians will be in a world more advanced than ours, able to sort out what happened and laugh at our naïveté the same way we now joke about how little people knew in the 1919-1920 Influenza pandemic.

        • Auldyin says:

          @WS
          ‘Warp Speed’ only works on ‘Startrek’ but it’s OK they’ve got legal immunity from damages.

        • Wisdom Seeker says:

          @Auldyin –

          LOL about Warp Speed & Star Trek.

          Wonder whether & how soon the vaccine makers will be able to deliver an improved 2nd-generation product?

  6. joe2 says:

    Training people to obey, the goal of the new normal New World Order Phase I appears to be on schedule. Phase II, financial and purchase tracking, will start as soon as digital fiat is ready to roll out. Phase III, determining your value to the state, is waiting on completion of the Citizen Climate Score monitoring computer system.

    • Anton says:

      Phase IV I assume is the lizard people taking control

    • DCR says:

      Well said

    • Nick Kelly says:

      Is your neighbor projecting e-beams thru your walls?

      • joe2 says:

        Not that I know of. But China already has a Citizen Score that will prevent you from buying a rail or plane ticket if your score is too low. And cameras that use facial recognition to catch and dock the score of jaywalkers. NYC requires a vaccine certificate to enter a restaurant. The ECB and the Fed both say digital currency will “compliment” cash, but we shall see. Who knew NSA was recording all your stuff in Idaho until Snowden blew the whistle.

        Feel free to do your own extrapolation to the future.

  7. MCH says:

    I think there is a lot to be missed with trade shows… the part of actual human interaction is still crucial in business relations.

    Well, perhaps the Millennials and Gen Z will show us how wrong we are. And that all you need is Zoom… Zoom… Zoom, all you need is Zoom.🤪

  8. Random guy 62 says:

    I write this from a hotel while attending a trade show 7 hours from home.

    My wife says our toddler keeps asking where I am.

    The trade show has been fairly productive for us but not so for at least half of the people standing around at empty booths. I am a bit surprised at the level of attendance here. About 50% wearing masks, but lots of people.

    Our company does a half dozen every year.

    IMO, trade shows are old technology that can and should go the way of the dodo.

    The internet is one huge trade show. And a company website is a trade show booth, complete with contact information, and product information, all available 24/7 for nearly free.

    The amount of money we spend on trade shows in a year can get ridiculous, and it’s the very first thing cut when the budget gets tight.

    My $0.02…The primary driver keeping trade shows alive is FOMO.

    • Phil m says:

      Random Guy, did your company participate in any of the industry ” virtual” events that popped up over the past year. For the most part these were attempts by trade show operators to keep already commited revenue ( in many cases deposits for live events weren’t being refunded and the only option for tge vendors was to try the virtual platform). IMO theses events have been horrendous. In 90% + cases companies would be better off creating engaging content for their own websites, whether that be webinars, videos, articles, blogs or case studies.

      • MCH says:

        I agree. Having been to half a dozen myself, I can honestly say it’s a total waste of time, you set up virtual booths that no one will visit, you have a list of people who are all sales guys… to say that this is all horrendous is an understatement.

        Ultimately, our company found webinars to be a better way to go in this environment, but it’s not the same as trade show where serendipity can happen.

        • Joe Saba says:

          online/zoom = dummy conventions
          I liked commaradory and shared dinners(at there expense)
          I don’t do business over phone unless we’ve met in person prior

          no need since THEIR PERCEPTIONS are wrong 90% time

          I’ve found 99% time they have different perceptions than reality and it cost me time and money

          NO SO SORRY – but you need to meet me in person to conduct business
          if not then YOU REALLY DON”T NEED MY COMPANY

      • Random guy 62 says:

        We did not opt for those but were offered several. Even the guy trying to sell me on one of them couldn’t explain why people would want to carve out a special time of day to visit what is basically just a website. I didn’t envy his job.

        A relative did attend one at work and said it was a complete and total waste of time. No attendees. They were entirely the trade show industry trying to avoid complete destruction. Can’t fault them for trying I guess.

        Trade shows have some positives. Grabbing beers with a promising lead after hours is a great way to connect on a human level. That interaction is important but can be done in other ways. Drop by for lunch or a round of golf.

        My dad tells me about the old days at work when they used to have to flip through a giant catalog called the Thomas Register any time they wanted to find a vendor of a component – a bushing…paint… steel… they would write and call them until a match was made.

        Trade shows feel the same to me as a relative youngster.

        There is still a shred of excitement about walking through one that might keep them alive but the ROI for us is usually terrible.

        We go mainly because our competition goes, and they probably do the same.

  9. cas127 says:

    Hardest hit…Ashley Madison.

  10. COWG says:

    Wolf,

    Do your billions and billions reduced to millions and millions include the periphery lost wages of those who service those tourism trades?

    Or is it just direct hotel/convention bookings and those direct monies?

    • MCH says:

      The billions looks like it’s just hotel revenue. Now, I don’t know if that might include things like AirBNB, but I’m going to bet it doesn’t include the revenue to Uber, or the eateries around the conventions, or all of the other dollars generated due to business travel.

      Certainly there is nothing on airline travel here.

      • Joe Saba says:

        so what we have is TREMENDOUS AMOUNT of workers who can fill all those HELP WANTED SIGNS

        most staffs are at best 1/2

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Direct $ revenues for hotels from their business travel clients (we know leisure travel is hot). However, the lack of revenues does ricochet through the system, and few people get hired, etc. In terms of jobs, the convention business has far from recovered.

      • MCH says:

        And they just revamped Moscone recently too. Cities like SF and LV need the old way of doing things.

        But the situation is a real double edged sword, if all of those things come back, the intangible costs of living in SF will increase.

        And the city already has its shares of problems. Went to inner Richmond with a couple of families for dinner on Labor Day and one of the waiter suggested that we leave the door to the car unlocked since they had car multiple break ins recently in the area because people wanted to rummage through the cars, even though nothing was visible.

        That was the first time in my 25 years living in the Bay Area I ever heard a recommendation like that.

  11. Daz says:

    If most are WFH there’s no need for business travel.

  12. SpencerG says:

    If you think business conventions are down… think for a second about leisure conventions. I work with a firm that provides lodging for ComicCon events. They are really hurting.

  13. ru82 says:

    I just read that Hurricane Ida will probably create more pressure and higher prices in the used car market.

  14. petedivine says:

    I use to do 4-5 trade shows or corporate events every year and travel every week for client meetings. I was drinking too much, eating too much, stressed too much, and was exhausted most of the week only to recover Friday – Sunday and to do it all over again on Monday.

    I don’t miss the old paradigm.

    The new paradigm scares me. I hope we can find success and not a slow burn of declining civilization. I think there is something behind the COVID curtain. The same something that enables the green revolution. In essence they’re one and the same. I think we have an energy problem. I can’t define its scope or duration but when you want a piece of the puzzle that fits a big picture declining EROI fits the bill.

    • TimTim says:

      Look up soaring natural gas prices in the UK. A thing right now.

      Funnily enough, wind farms aren’t producing as much electricity as hoped for due something no one ever saw coming, unpredictable weather…

      • Auldyin says:

        @TT
        The ‘Interconector (Elec) from France just blew out when EU gas surged 46%. Germany wants Nordstream 2 approved pronto and so do individual States but EU is still towing the US line and draging it’s feet. It’s going to be one hell of a winter for us. Watch for lots of coincidence breakdowns and disconnections, statistically improbable but politically certain.
        LoL on the windfarms and lighting up the coal stations.
        Just sayin’

  15. Rcohn says:

    I went on vacation to Santa Barbara Ca. Everything was crowded and the prices were absurd.

    • Nathan Dumbrowski says:

      Sounds exactly how a vacation should be. Memories. If you didn’t go out and spend a little extra then it would defeat the purpose of a vacation. You hopefully had an amazing time with stellar weather.

      Your post made my day

  16. VArealtor says:

    I just backed out of attending a large conference in Vegas taking place in October, with a non-refundable registration fee. I was willing to put up with showing my covid vax card at check-in and flying cross country masked, but when I realized Nevada has gone back to indoor mask requirements I pulled the plug. Not worth it to me to spend 4 days and nights masked on top of everything else.

  17. Álvaro (from Spain) says:

    The pandemic is not over at all, no matter how hard they try to sell the idea.

    • eg says:

      This.

      It’s merely the end of the beginning, and very, very far from the beginning of the end.

      • Harrold says:

        “It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”

        Winston Churchill

  18. TimTim says:

    But the question is, are the organizers of the cannabis conference more concerned that it won’t go ahead or that the delegates will forget about it….

  19. cos999 says:

    I think some of these conferences have value in both professional development for the benefit of the employee and the company in networking and growing their business. However, CFO’s love the fact that the travel budgets went to zero, improved the bottom line/share buybacks, and CFOs are the bigger reason IMHO business is not coming back.

    • Paulo says:

      Let the boss go if it’s such a great opportunity. :-)

      Thinking back many years ago I remember once attending a conference with my boss. The keynote speaker was one Justin Trudeau when he was on the up and up. The next morning I was asked why I walked out during the speech? It was pretty funny, actually. I always found these see and be seen events a total waste of time and to this day have no idea why I went? I expect they will continue to decline after Covid.

      Hotel Room or own bed and pillows? Wife or co-worker? Where’s my dog? Restaurant food or home cooked? No thanks. It takes a long time to recover.

      The 7 stages of Employment:
      1) Gratitude
      2) Hard work
      3) Keener
      4) Disillusionment
      5) Disgruntlement
      6) Hard work with head down
      7) Retirement and gratitude

  20. Nemo 300 BLK says:

    While I rarely need to fly for business, my wife and I flew like crazy the last two quarters of 2020. You could park in the parking deck near the front door of the ATL airport without issue and the folks at the restaurants and hotels were excited to see you.

    This morning I booked us leisure flights to Sarasota in December and I’ve already booked a convention-type hotel for the Atlanta Boat Show in January. I’m trying to get the wife to go to the St Pete Boat Show in January as well. Not everyone is afraid of trade shows, hotels, and air travel.

    We’ve flown to the Keys once this year and are flying back in May.

  21. c1ue says:

    I am very interested to see how this impacts the EU.
    Tourism is one of the largest revenue transfers from the wealthy EU countries to the poorer ones. It is also a major revenue transfer both within localities and between US states.
    The interruption of this flow is going to have even medium term impact.

    • Michael Gorback says:

      I canceled my plans for Italy in October. There’s a small town that has a 3 day festival every year. They close the main street and have lots of outdoor markets. You can buy shoes, a parakeet, full dress suit, or a lawnmower. At night the restaurants open stalls outside and sell food to go. There is live music and everyone is out mingling, sampling food, and dancing.

      The problem is it’s crowded as hell during this festival and my friends there tell there are a lot of restrictions. This is my second year in a row not going.

  22. Rudolph says:

    The problem with San Francisco, my opinion based on 60 years of observation here, is that the part of the city where the conventions take place and people stay, is basically a shithole. The “interesting” parts away from downtown, like the Mission, 1/3 to 1/2 of businesses are permanently boarded up. Many more just never open. One or two thriving restaurants, like Red or the white girls donut shop on 24th are thriving, but that’s not enough to sustain business nor tax collection activity for a city with a budget almost as big as the entire state of North Carolina.

    Until the political turds are flushed from the civic toilet that is city hall, nothing will change, except in a few minor ways. The 1990s are never coming back. Like Madrid and New Orleans, high rises can too be boarded up permanently. The Millennium Tower shoring has stopped and it’s got a growing lean.

    Sure is nice to have parks to ourselves and be able to even find seating at Fisherman’s Wharf, but the future is bleak under the present tax and spend demographic favoritism kickback city government. The mayor has become a laughing stock as have all the bold statements and “plans” to fix the problems created by the same people who created them.

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Rudolph,

      I was OK reading this until I came to the bizarre pejorative you used to describe San Francisco’s mayor (a Black woman). I edited out those two words. It showed where you stand and explains some things in your comment.

  23. Bullstreet says:

    Love SF, great place to visit but not live unless you bought in early or make a bundle, as some surely do. The home prices dipped during covid, but only nominally. Regarding Covid, hopefully the mask mandates will abate once more become vaccinated. The viral load and transmissability in the vaccinated is certainly less than unvaccinated persons. Of course, at present, one cannot completely exclude transmission to the unvaccinated, thus mandates persist. I have no idea what level of vaccination or natural immunity breaks this pattern, here is to hoping we are close! If not, we mask up when these spikes come and get by, I mean folks are still dining out and flying anyway, so not like we are in the hard core lockdown days of 2020. Perspective is key.

  24. Swamp Creature says:

    Good time for a Staycation. These expensive ripoff hotels are going to have to find some other sucker to pay their outrageous booking fees along with their bad food. Just went out and got a cashiers check for $3,100 for my second implant scheduled for next week. Also, $1,400 for homeowners ins. Ouch!! Tonight I’m going out to hear a great live blues band and watch the Washington Football Team on a big screen HGTV lose another game because of a fumble in the last 2 minutes.

  25. Insurgent Bob says:

    My wife’s large defense company made everyone go back to the office right after July 4th. They started traveling like normal.

    And… she brought covid home within a month. So, yeah.

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