Staycationers are being asked to fork out as much as €1,500 for a 4-star hotel for two people on a two-night break, as hotel accommodation prices sky-rocket during the summer months.
According to an Irish Independent price survey, the cheapest stay at a 4-star hotel in seven of Ireland’s cities and towns over the next 12 weekends stands at €320 for two people for two nights, not including breakfast.
According to our price comparison, the cheapest options of hotel stays in Ireland this summer are notably more expensive than equal-rated hotels in some of Europe’s tourism hotspots.
If you want to secure a 4-star hotel in Kilkenny this summer, the cheapest option for two nights stands at €448 in the Ormonde Hotel on the weekend of August 26-28.
On the same weekend, the Mayflower Hotel in London, also a 4-star hotel, is priced at €233 for two nights for two people.
Similarly, Dublin’s well-known 4-star Skylon Hotel’s cheapest weekend option this summer is the last weekend of July, 29-31, at €406 for two people for two nights.
In Madrid on the same weekend, two people can stay in a 4-star hotel in the city centre for €178.
In Cork, the cheapest weekend hotel option over the next 12 weeks, is the 3-star Ashley Hotel for €285 for two nights from July 22-24.
Similarly, the cheapest hotel option in Galway this summer, is the 4-star Clybaun Hotel priced at €331 from September 2-4.
Waterford and Limerick claimed best value in the survey, with the 3-star Rhu Glenn hotel in Waterford priced at €233 for two nights on the weekend of August 5-7.
And the 3-star Pery’s Hotel in Limerick city has a weekend option this summer for €201.
With many hotels in Ireland currently standing at €400-plus for a room for a weekend this summer, those looking for a break could get better value by booking a seven-night stay in a European city.
Currently on Ryanair, a trip to Milan in June for two adults, both with 10kg carry-on luggage, for seven nights in a 4-star hotel will cost €977.
Dermott Jewell of the Consumers’ Association of Ireland explained how many factors are playing a part in the recent rise of hotel room costs.
But he said the prices are unacceptable.
“They are going to have to be very careful in how they proceed with this as the reality of it is, hotels have received support in getting VAT reduction, which is a unique benefit that other businesses haven’t received,” Mr Jewell said.
Across Europe hotels have offered up rooms to Ukrainian refugees, which is causing hotel bed shortages on a short-term basis.
Mr Jewell believes that the difficulties that have been placed on the hospitality sector must be acknowledged but they cannot be an excuse for the “eye-watering prices they are advertising”.
“If hotels continue to produce prices that are in fact astronomical, people will begin to lose confidence and trust in the Irish market.”
Tourism is another sector that could suffer greatly due to these soaring hotel prices, as it is one of Ireland’s main sources of revenue: the country cannot afford to lose out on tourists visiting this summer.
“The current cost of a hotel room would push Irish people out of the country and would definitely not entice any tourists to come to Ireland,” added Mr Jewell.
In response to the Irish Independent’s price survey, the Irish Hotels Federation said recent price figures for tourism accommodation from the Central Statistics Office indicated that prices have increased by approximately 16pc over the last three years, which would correlate broadly with industry figures.
“This is in the context of enormous increases across all our operating costs in recent times. Over the last few months alone we’ve seen energy prices for hotels shoot up by 88pc – this is a significant cost element for hotels. The cost of food and beverage supplies is up by 20pc. Insurance costs continue to rise, as well as linen and water charges,” a spokesperson said.
“Despite these challenges, Irish hotels continue to offer good value to visitors.”
The federation’s advice is for people to book well in advance to avoid hitting high prices, and to shop around to get the best value, including contacting hotels directly.
“The importance of this has been highlighted in recent days due to limited weekend availability over the coming weeks in Dublin and other prime tourism destinations,” the spokesperson said.
“To take the example of Dublin, it is important to note that rates currently available for these dates represent the last number of hotel rooms left in Dublin out of a total of 22,000 rooms on a given night.”