SportsEvents Magazine

MAR 2017

SportsEvents is edited for those who plan tournaments or other sports events.

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March 2017 34 www.sportseventsmagazine.com t SPECIAL Feature appears to be growing as a correlation to income and consumer spending, which reached an all-time high in the 4th quarter of 2016. And consumer confidence has exceeded its pre-re- cession high of July 2007. But rising income is not necessarily distributed equally in the U.S. and there is a dis- tinct difference between the impact the improving economy is having on the "haves" and the "have nots." In other words, the "haves" are more confi- dent and are spending more on sports while the "have nots" are still spending the greatest share of their disposable income on necessities. Interesting enough, family income is the strongest differentiator as to wheth- er or not kids are regularly participat- ing in sports at a healthy level. Based on the SFIA study, only one in five kids from homes with less than $25,000 in household income are playing team sports, while those with $100,000 or more are playing at a rate of more than twice that level (45.5 percent). Spending Per Athlete Spending per athlete per event increased by 3.2 percent during 2016 This was spurred by the higher cost of hotel accommodations and cost of travel, higher entry fees and a general increase in cost stimulated by a higher U.S. inflation rate. In our study, ath- letes' spending averaged $894.90 per event during 2016, a $27.75 increase over 2015. The rising cost of travel is a concern expressed by many survey respondents, event organizers as well as destination executives. "It's a troubling situation," Schumacher said, "especially under current conditions where you see a focus on profiteering and a lack of con- cern about the traveler, like when you see room rebates in the range of $20 to $30 and beyond. It's like, all you have to do is tell them how much and they'll just pay it." Don't expect the cost of hotel rooms to get more affordable. Forecasts point to a continuing seller's market for the industry. Hotel room rates are expected to increase by 4.4 percent in 2017, ► ColumbusGAsports.com Sports Council Columbus, Georgia P.O. Box 1519 | Columbus, GA 31902 | 706.660.1996 Year Average % Increase Daily Rate (cumulative) 2011 101.73 2012 106.00 4.2% 2013 109.97 7.9% 2014 114.91 12.4% 2015 120.00 16.9% 2016 123.97 20.2% U.S. Hotels Average Daily Rate

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