How Hotels in the Lake District are beating the downturn
Tourism businesses up and down the country have felt the challenges associated with the economic downturn the United Kingdom is experiencing at the moment.
Businesses are having to try twice as hard at gaining new customers in the current economic climate and none more so than in the tourism industry.
The Lake District has faced some very challenging times in the past decade in fact it is 10 years ago since the outbreak of foot and mouth this year and more recently, the 2009 floods. Businesses, particularly in the tourism sector have kept their spirit and have risen above these problems to continue to provide tourists to this area the best possible holiday and experience and do this beautiful part of the country justice.
It isn’t easy for hotels in the Lake District especially around highly popular areas such as Keswick. Keswick attracts around 1.5 million visitors a year which is a huge amount so consequently it is highly concentrated with bed and breakfast establishments and hotels.
Standing out from the crowd can often be hard but hotels in the Lake District constantly strive to provide more services and keep up with trends in the way guests take their holiday and what they require when they are here.
One of these changes or trends has been in the type of accommodation for families. Parents do not want to be excluded from staying in hotels with their children.
Parents still want a bit of luxury and do not always want to camp or go self catering when visiting the Lake District. So with this shift, hoteliers are waking up to the idea that families are a large market but hardly targeted. There are many hotels that operate a strict “no children” policy as we should all have the choice either way but more and more hotels are now quite happy having families stay and are adapting rooms and creating fun things for children to do to entice them.
The Lake District is the perfect location for children. Endless activities to keep them occupied for example watersports, walking, Go-Ape, a zoo and the Ravenglass-Eskdale railway. It has long been an area popular with families and can be very educational for children as well as fun.
Hotels in Keswick and the Lake District as with many parts of the country are quieter during the week. Looking into ways in which services can be offered to entice customers in the week days can come in many forms such as mid week special offers etc but looking into the corporate services side is the top choice. The UK conferencing and event market is worth an estimated £8bn with hotels being the number 1 location for holding such events.
Conferencing is a high revenue market within the hotel industry. It is an added business avenue which also brings in revenue during the day through day delegate rates. It also brings guests in throughout the week days which can be of great needs for some hotels which are heavily weekend orientated.
Of course, it isn’t just leisure guests that need to be lured. With businesses cutting staff and budgets, the business guest is just as important to target. Cumbria is an excellent stop off for business guests from the south on their way to Scotland. Another market is conferencing. Conferencing facilities and packages are offered inmost of the larger Keswick hotels now. With most conferences held on week days, it is an excellent market to target. Creative marketing campaigns are springing up such as the Best Western ‘message focussed menu options’ where bread and water is an option if a team has recorded poor performance. This is an eye catching campaign but which saves the business money but helps to improve the performance of their team as the same time.