AHLA: Hotels projected to pay record taxes and wages in 2024

America’s hotels are projected to generate record levels of federal, state and local tax revenue this year while paying employees historic totals of wages, salaries and other compensation, according to state-by-state projections released by the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA).

The data show hotels are projected to generate a total of nearly $83.4 billion in tax revenue this year. The 10 states projected to generate the highest hotel tax revenue are:

Hotels are projected to pay a record high total of wages, salaries and compensation this year—$123.4 billion compared to $118.0 billion in 2023. The 10 states projected to pay the highest amounts of hotel wages are:

Nominal hotel guest spending on lodging, transportation, food and beverage, retail and other expenses is expected to reach $758.6 billion this year, up nearly 5% from 2023 and almost 24% above 2019 levels. The 10 states projected to see the most hotel guest spending are:

And while hotels are expected to hire about 45,000 new employees this year, according to the analysis, hotels will still fall about 225,000 jobs short of the nearly 2.37 million people that were employed in 2019.

The 10 states expected to have the highest hotel employment levels are:

The nationwide workforce shortage is making it difficult to hire new staff even as hotels are paying near-historic average wages and offering more benefits and flexibility than ever before. In February, national average hotel wages were $23.84 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

As of February, there were 8.8 million job openings in the U.S. and only 6.5 million unemployed people to fill those jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and there are currently more than 80,000 hotel jobs open in the U.S., according to Indeed.

“Historic projections for wage and tax revenue totals point to a strong 2024 for hoteliers,” said Kevin Carey, interim president/CEO, AHLA. “But our industry is facing significant obstacles to growth. These include the ongoing nationwide labor shortage, stubborn inflation and a federal regulatory agenda that threatens future economic expansion. AHLA will continue to fight for solutions to these pressing challenges so hoteliers can focus on what they do best: serving guests.”