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OYO Hotels & Homes banks on domestic tourism

KUALA LUMPUR (July 4): Indian-based OYO Hotels & Homes is experiencing an improvement in its business with the opening up of the local economy post Movement Control Order (MCO), reported The Edge Malaysia.

OYO CEO for Southeast Asia and Middle East, Dr Mandar Vaidya, told the weekly that its budget hotels are “not only performing between 20% and 30% better than  other hotels in the same category, but it is also doing better than the industry as a whole”.

He said OYO “is recovering at a faster pace than its competition” owing to the government’s focus on encouraging domestic tourism.

Vaidya said “OYO has distinct advantages” since many “people are not splurging because they have a smaller disposable income” and this “may have an impact on higher star-rated hotels but will not affect budget hotel groups”.

He added that the Covid-19 situation meant that “people are not looking to experiment and stay at a new hotel” where hygiene is a major concern.

They will prefer to stay at “tried-and-tested accommodations such as OYO hotels”, he explained to the business publication.

The weekly also reported that between 80% and 85% of OYO’s guests are domestic customers, made up of mostly “millennials or locals living in the city where the hotel is located or in the outskirts”.

 “This [guest demographic] has helped us. In a post-Covid-19 world, people want to go only as far as they can drive instead of flying or taking the bus,” Vaidya said.

Still, Vaidya is cautious about how things may pan out. “About 30% to 40% of our business has come back, but we can’t be certain whether it will be back [to normal] in six months or a year. We have to wait and watch.

“But what we do know is that business from the OYO app and OYO website has come back at double the speed compared with all other [booking] channels,” he added.

OYO was established in 2013 and entered the Malaysia market about two years ago.

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Read the full report in this week’s The Edge Malaysia

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