The Ratings Game: Taylor Swift is propping up the hotel industry, analysts say, amid questions about revenge-travel fluctuations


Taylor Swift’s “Eras” tour has been emblematic of our own era of supply and demand shocks. Last year, ticket demand overwhelmed Ticketmaster. This year, apparently, the tour has caused a “notable” uptick in hotel sales, analysts said on Friday.

U.S. states where Taylor Swift concerts have taken place this year have seen their monthly hotel sales, measured by available hotel room, rise 7% on average year over year, Bernstein analysts said in a research note on Friday. That was more than 4 percentage points above the national performance overall for those months.

The “Swift lift,” or the bump from “Swiftonomics” — both terms that came up in the analysts’ note — arrived as analysts wonder how much appetite people have left for revenge travel, as higher prices cut into savings but concerns about a recession fade, for now, among some economists.

But the Bernstein analysts said the Taylor Swift effect on U.S. hotels was significant, as more travelers in the nation venture out to destinations abroad.

They traveled: A $35,000 trip to see Taylor Swift? How the artist’s fans boosted the Los Angeles economy by $320 million.

“In a normalized U.S. travel environment, this has been a notable boost to the hotel industry, especially as booming U.S. outbound this summer has shifted demand away from domestic on a (year-over-year) basis,” the analysts said of the “Eras” tour impact.

That tour will run through most of next year, likely leaving Europe, Canada, Latin America and Asia with similar hotel-sales gains. But Swiftonomics hasn’t come without its own disruptions, the analysts suggested.

Also read: Taylor Swift is on track to earn $345 million this year, bringing her closer to billionaire status

The Bernstein analysts said that in Minneapolis, hotel prices jumped 80% in the month leading up to Swift’s concert dates, compared with a 37% increase for short-term rentals. Hotel chains’ profit and sales figures benefit from higher room prices, but the analysts argued that events like the “Eras” tour “are one reason why the short-term rentals are necessary.”

“The Taylor Swift effect is one of a kind but many cities will likely try and recreate it,” the Bernstein analysts said. “We try a similar analysis for Beyonce concert dates, but the effect is much more muted.”

The glitch-addled rollout of “Eras” tour ticket sales led to greater lawmaker scrutiny of Ticketmaster’s parent, Live Nation Entertainment LYV, , and questions about that company’s grip on the concert industry. Despite a boom in concert-ticket demand, more broadly, price increases over the past two years have led to bigger complaints from artists about a music industry that they say doesn’t support them.

Live Nation Chief Financial Officer Joe Berchtold , during a conference this week, said demand was still strong.

“We haven’t seen any issues at all, any signs of any slowness on sales as recently as this week, and last week continued to perform very strongly,” he said. “So we’re not seeing any issues, we’re continuing to move forward with the expectation that next year will be an even better year.”

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