Are Travel Boycotts Hurting Arizona Hotels? Will They?

The controversial immigration law passed by Arizona’s government back in April has lead to over 20 organizations (including cities, towns, school districts, churches and universities) joining a travel boycott of the state. But is it hurting business? Too soon to tell, says USAToday.

Phoenix-area hotels are filling more rooms than a year ago, says the article. Despite the increase, the general manager of Arizona’s largest hotel, the 1,000-room Phoenix Sheraton, says hotels are losing business.

For 2011, the Sheraton’s lost business currently stands at just under $2.5 million, he said. From 2012-14, the total is between $4 million and $5 million.

“You’re not going to start to see the impact, in my opinion, until the mid- to late first quarter of 2011,” [the general manager] said.

The delay is because the cancellation fees were too much for many organizations, and they had to go through with their reservations. Will they book again? Will it matter? Who knows.

UPDATE: A judge has blocked the controversial parts of the bill responsible for the boycott.

Are the Arizona travel boycotts hurting hotels? Too early to say [USAToday]
Arizona’s immigration law has little impact on Arizona’s tourism [Arizona Republic]