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Hotels make a comeback

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MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: If you were traveling this weekend, you probably noticed that taking a vacation is a bit more expensive this summer. For one thing, hotels are busier and pricier this season. Alex Cohen has more.


ALEX COHEN: The first few years after Sept. 11 were bleak for the hotel industry, occupancy rates dropped significantly. But Americans are traveling again.

Randy Smith is CEO of Smith Travel Research. He says occupancy rates nationwide are close to 65 percent this summer — a number not seen in more than five years.

Not surprisingly, he says, many hotels are charging guests more.

RANDY SMITH: Some of the big urban markets, New York City, Chicago, you could be looking at room rates as much as 8, 10, 12 percent above what they were last year.

If you’re looking for a less expensive place to play this summer, he recommends central Florida where markets haven’t rebounded quite as much.

I’m Alex Cohen for Marketplace.

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