Hotels being impacted by staffing shortages due to the pandemic

It’s no secret that businesses are struggling throughout the pandemic, with many having to overcome new challenges.

“It seems like we get over one hurdle and then another obstacle is created,  so right now what’s going on is we’re having staffing shortages,” Susan Jones, Executive Director of the OC Hotel Motel Restaurant Association, said.

I’m told those staffing shortages aren’t just being seen locally, but across the country.

For places like Ocean City, they believe they’re feeling the impacts a little harder than places that aren’t seasonal destinations.

“We have the demand so people are actually coming to our community to vacation, so we need the workers desperately,” Jones said.

However, until they can fix the staffing shortages, many hotels have decided to cap occupancy and bookings.

Which means, potentially huge losses in revenue.

“If you have an average  of 200 dollars per night, and the room tax is 11 percent, that’s 22 dollars per day, per night, per room that is not being generated in the tax revenue,” Jones said.

Meanwhile, in Rehoboth, The Bellmoor Inn & Spa told us they’re also experiencing staffing shortages.

“In addition to the wage war, in addition to whats happening as far as employees only working for a couple days or two and then going to another competitor, they’re not showing up for the interview at all, I’m told it’s because of the unemployment benefits they’re receiving,” Benjamin Gray, the general manager of The Bellmoor Inn & Spa in Rehoboth Beach and chair of the Southern Delaware Tourism board.

They said for them shortages have caused everyone to have to pitch in.

“My mangers wear a lot of hats, we typically wear a lot of hats on a regular basis, I mean I will plunge a toilet if I have to, I will strip a bed if I have to,” Gray said.

And although the hotel industry has been hit hard, we’re told they do see a light at the end of the tunnel and will eventually get through this.

“We are an incredible resilient community as I mentioned before, we know that the tourism industry is certainly rebounding right now, we just need people that are hungry and ready to work,” Gray said.

The Bellmoor Inn and Spa said they’ve had at least 17 no shows for interviews within the past month.

They added they’re not getting their J1 students because some countries aren’t accepting the visa transfers or there’s a back log of employees who are unable to make it oversees.

Categories: Coronavirus, Delaware, Local News, Maryland