Online Extra: Our Readers Rate the Hotels

Here are more results of our first online survey about business hotels

Hey, guess what? I booked a room last week at the Denver Airport Marriott for $45 a night on Priceline.com. Marriott's own Web site said the rooms there start at $79. Even that sounds cheap for a Marriott.

As discounted prices like these show, this has been a tough time for the travel industry. A recent study by hotel specialists PKF Consulting and the Hospitality Research Group showed that the average U.S. hotel saw its income decline 12% in the first half of this year. Their study forecasts that 2003 will be the third straight year of declining profits for the U.S. hotel industry.

"ENCOURAGED."

  Travel industry types, however, are an optimistic bunch. Marriott International just raised its projected revenue per room growth to 3% to 4% next year. "We're hopeful," Chairman and CEO J.W. Marriott Jr. told BusinessWeek Online. "We're encouraged by the increases in tech spending and capital spending. Those are all drivers of our business."

Tough times for hotel owners are good times if you want to book a room. If your budget does include travel, there's never been a better time to spend it. That's why BusinessWeek Online decided to create our first Business Hotel Survey. We polled our readers during the month of September and got some 1,200 responses. The results should give even veteran road warriors some tips.

What follow are the responses to the survey's multiple-choice questions. They provide a deeper level of detail than the overview provided in the story published in BusinessWeek's Oct. 27 issue. Remember, this survey isn't scientifically accurate because anyone who wanted to could respond.

Besides rates and location, what are three most important amenities or services in a business hotel?

First Choice:

Option Total %  
36 2.98 %
Guest rooms 465 38.53 %
General decor 39 3.23 %
Lobby and other public areas 7 0.58 %
Meeting rooms 19 1.57 %
Business center 24 1.99 %
Restaurants and bars 39 3.23 %
Room service 15 1.24 %
Gym/health club 96 7.95 %
Concierge services 20 1.66 %
The hotel staff 151 12.51 %
High-speed Internet access 235 19.47 %
Wi-fi Internet access 29 2.40 %
Other 32 2.65 %

Second Choice amenity

Option Total %  
33 2.73 %
Guest rooms 162 13.42 %
General decor 53 4.39 %
Lobby and other public areas 21 1.74 %
Meeting rooms 36 2.98 %
Business center 57 4.72 %
Restaurants and bars 125 10.36 %
Room service 52 4.31 %
Gym/health club 160 13.26 %
Concierge services 48 3.98 %
The hotel staff 172 14.25 %
High-speed Internet access 215 17.81 %
Wi-fi Internet access 49 4.06 %
Other 24 1.99 %

Third choice amenity:

Option Total %  
56 4.64 %
Guest rooms 104 8.62 %
General decor 59 4.89 %
Lobby and other public areas 51 4.23 %
Meeting rooms 28 2.32 %
Business center 66 5.47 %
Restaurants and bars 151 12.51 %
Room service 55 4.56 %
Gym/health club 170 14.08 %
Concierge services 52 4.31 %
The hotel staff 208 17.23 %
High-speed Internet access 125 10.36 %
Wi-fi Internet access 53 4.39 %
Other 29 2.40 %

Does your company policy require you to use specific hotels or chains?

Option Total %  
Yes 197 16.65 %
No 986 83.35 %

Where do you find the best rates?

Option Total %  
Over the phone 120 10.14 %
In-house corporate travel dept. 273 23.06 %
Independent travel agent 118 9.97 %
Hotel-operated internet site 237 20.02 %
Independent internet site 436 36.82 %

Does your company policy require you to use specific hotels or chains?

Option Total %  
Yes 61 14.88 %
No 349 85.12 %

How important is the hotel's cost in making your travel plans?

Option Total %  
Very important 480 40.44 %
Somewhat important 670 56.44 %
Not important 37 3.12 %
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