Are New Mexico hotels ready for a busy holiday season?

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – This time last year, most people stayed home for the holidays due to the pandemic. Now, with vaccinations and loosened restrictions, more folks are traveling to see loved ones this year.

Hotels are hopeful that this means more people will be checking in this holiday season.

"We have seen that the number of travelers has increased tremendously,” said Imesh Vaidya, CEO of Premier Hospitality. "As long as the airlines stay consistent with their scheduling and as long as the gas prices trend downward as they are right now, I think we will have a great influx of tourists for the holiday season."

Premier Hospitality oversees seven hotels across New Mexico and two in Colorado. While there is hope for more business this year, there is a bit of worry about accommodating all of the guests.

Premier Hospitality said its hotels have faced an issue all too common across the entire industry.

"The industry itself is still struggling trying to get employees, staffing, so that we can take care of the guests,” Vaidya said.

Vaidya said staffing issues have improved slightly towards the end of this year, but it’s still not near to where they want to be.

"The industry has done everything we can to ensure the safety of the guests. As well as provide the best service as we can. And there are so many challenges right now, whether it’s staffing or its product availability. So we just ask the traveling public to be considerate of the people that are there working,” she said.