How Hotels Prepare For Solar Eclipse Tourism

How do hotels prepare for one of the biggest events in the hospitality industry?


Sonja Swanson


April 8, 2024

When thinking of major events that bring in local tourism, many people think of sporting events like the Olympics or the Super Bowl. Or maybe people think of music events like Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour that brought in millions of dollars in revenue for hotels. It’s hard to imagine another event that would overshadow these instances that are bringing in record numbers for tourism, but the solar eclipse does exactly that. 

This year’s solar eclipse will likely be 2024’s biggest event in the U.S., bringing in over an estimated 1 billion dollars in revenue for the regions where the total eclipse will appear.  As there won’t be another solar eclipse over North America again until 2044, this rare event will bring in more than 4 million people to see the rare event. 

When looking at areas near the total solar eclipse, hotel searches and bookings shot up over 300%! This surge in demand for areas like Austin, Texas, have seen large price hikes for hotel rooms, boosting the overall revenue. While these numbers are exciting, it’s important to remember that this increase in incoming tourism will also lead to an increase in demand on the staff at hotels in the area. 

Graph from Navan showing the number of travel bookings from the week before and the week of the eclipse.
Image via Navan

For places like Austin, Dallas, or Toronto, where the eclipse will be seen in totality, the hospitality industry in the area might already have experience with large events, and their staff can be prepared. However, smaller towns that are used to lower traffic will be seeing a surge in demand for hotel reservations, and that large influx can be overwhelming for hotel staff. So how do these properties prepare for a big event like the solar eclipse?

Communication. Communication. Communication.

Whether it’s communication between the front desk and your guests, communication between managers and staff, or communication between different departments - in all aspects of your hotel, communication is key. If you know of any lookout locations nearby, make sure you have directions that are readily available to hand out to guests. Have any important information or tips about the solar eclipse that you can share to guests as they check in, or as they are about to head out to see the eclipse. A guest messaging feature like Kipsu’s Outreach enables hotels to send messages to all checked-in guests at once, helping you remind folks about key times to watch the eclipse. Make sure that your rooms are in tip-top shape, and have a communication plan between the front desk and housekeeping so rooms can be cleaned efficiently, and any extra requests made are fulfilled as soon as possible. When you are anticipating a fully booked hotel with heavy traffic, communication is key. 

Whether you are preparing for this year’s solar eclipse, or you are anticipating the next one in twenty years, having effective channels of communication will be important for a seamless experience for you and your guests. Set your property up for success by planning ahead and creating effective communication methods.

Kipsu’s guest messaging software is a great way to engage with your guests through customized text messages. Learn how guest messaging can help with seamless communication during major events.

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