APRIL 28, 2008

Singapore looks at hotel prices

The Singapore government is hinting that some of the hotels need to reassess their policies regarding the forthcoming Grand Prix at the end of September. The government is keen to allow market forces to dictate the price of hotel rooms, but with the price being as high as $1500 a night, with a minimum of three or even five nights, the race teams, the sponsors, the media and the fans are beginning to complain. The prices represent a tripling or even quadrupling of the normal prices.

The good news is that such exorbitant rates are driving away business and it is reported that one of the five-star hotels in Singapore is reported to have less than 20% occupancy for the race weekend. Singapore's Senior Minister of State (Trade and Industry) S Iswaran has hinted that hotels may need to reassess the prices to avoid the city being branded as exploitative. This will work against the plan to use the event to bring in more and more tourists and business visitors.