Job losses expected to mount in hotel industry, according to new study

As COVID-19 continues to spread, the hotel industry is facing a grim economic outlook.

According to an Oxford Economics study released by the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA), 44% of hotel employees in every state are projected to have lost or lose their jobs in coming weeks 

The impact to our industry is already more severe than anything we’ve seen before, including September 11th and the great recession of 2008 combined,” said Chip Rogers, AHLA president and CEO “The White House and Congress can take urgent action to protect countless jobs, provide relief to our dedicated and hardworking employees, and ensure that our small business operators and franchise owners – who represent more than half of hotels in the country – can keep their doors open.”

According to the Oxford report, the hotel industry supports nearly 2.3 million jobs directly and over 8.3 million jobs total (direct hotel operations, guest spending, indirect supply-chain and induced), but steep declines in occupancy rates will lead to mass layoffs and furloughs. 


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For states in the Southwest, the job loss projections look stark. 

Out of the 200,886 total hotel supported jobs in Arizona, 81,984 are expected to be lost as a result of the pandemic. In Colorado, the number is 71,841 out of the 176,034 total hotel supported jobs.

Texas, the second most populous state in the U.S., is expected to lose 268,797 of its 658,637 total jobs in this category. 

Even in the far less populous Utah, 35,286 hotel supported jobs are in peril. 

Nationwide, the study projects nearly 3.4 million jobs will be lost. See the state-by-state breakdown here.