Canada’s hotel occupancy rate reached 62.6% in March 2023, a 4.2% rise since the same period in 2022, according to hotel analytics company STR. This is the country’s highest occupancy rate in five months.

Among Canada’s major markets, Vancouver reported the highest March occupancy level at 77.5%, 3.8% above that of 2019. GlobalData analysis reveals that Vancouver’s increasing demand as a conference and convention spot has been driving overnight visits to the city.

Among the provinces and territories, Manitoba recorded the highest March occupancy level (76.7%), surpassing the pre-pandemic comparable by 14.0%.

New Brunswick (51.5%) saw the lowest hotel occupancy among provinces, up 0.6% against 2019. The lowest March occupancy was reported in Calgary at 56.3%, 9.8% above the 2019 comparable.

Prince Edward Island’s hotels benefitted from the province’s hosting of the Canada Winter Games from 18 February to 5 March 2023, which resulted in an increase in occupancy to 51.9%.

CoStar Group (parent company of STR)’s director of hospitality analytics for Canada Laura Baxter stated: “Canada’s hotel performance continued on its upward trajectory in March. Key metric indices show accelerated growth compared to the first two months of the year.

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The highest room rate rises were in resorts and airport hotels, indicating strong growth surrounding March break travel. Weekday occupancy was 3% above the 2019 comparable, a positive sign for the return of business travel. The segment with the most runway for improvement at a national level, however, is group travel, with occupancy down 9% from the first quarter of 2019.”

STR finds that Canada holds the third place in the Americas region for number of rooms in construction.