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Old 10-12-2014, 10:50 AM
 
231 posts, read 340,101 times
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So I visited Dubuque yesterday, and I was having a great time. So much so that I thought I'd stay the night rather than drive home. But get this: every moderately priced hotel all the way out to Peotsa, Iowa had NO VACANCIES.

Oh well, I thought. I'll drive 20 minutes to Potosi Brewing for a beer and dinner and call it day. Well, at 6:30, the restaurant was already booked solid for the night. They said I'd have to wait almost 2 hours if I wanted food!

Desperate, I stopped at Houlihan's on the way back in Dubuque and had to wait about a half-hour for a table. I asked if some big event was being held without my knowledge, but both the hotel clerk and waitress I spoke to had nothing of note to mention except a freakin' homecoming.

I didn't think I had to plan a weekend trip to Dubuque in mid-October weeks ahead of time. Is this common?
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:18 PM
 
5,239 posts, read 7,046,421 times
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I found this article from the same time last year, so maybe this is why. This obviously would be a rare occurrence as there is an article written about the full hotels.

Booked solid! 3 college homecomings fill Dubuque hotels - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:16 PM
 
231 posts, read 340,101 times
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I knew there had to be catch when I was bragging about what a fun day I was having while en route to Potosi. Same thing happened to me in Iowa City. How many homecoming does this state have?
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:18 PM
 
35,107 posts, read 42,933,275 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by one is lonely View Post
I knew there had to be catch when I was bragging about what a fun day I was having while en route to Potosi. Same thing happened to me in Iowa City. How many homecoming does this state have?
That would be as many colleges and high schools as that state has.
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Old 10-13-2014, 09:46 AM
 
231 posts, read 340,101 times
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Well, in retrospect, whatever happened in Iowa City wasn't even a homecoming. It was some other school event. I can't wait for prom season...
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Old 10-16-2014, 08:19 AM
 
3,492 posts, read 5,229,734 times
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Truth. I needed a hotel in Cedar Rapids or Iowa City once. I had to drive about 40 miles out of the city to find an opening that wasn't a smoking room. Why? A girls volleyball tournament was in town. Small cities do not plan to have enough room. They do enjoy jacking up prices to take advantage of a shortage they created.
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Old 10-16-2014, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Jonesboro
3,617 posts, read 3,562,704 times
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Default What the heck Dubuque?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
Truth. I needed a hotel in Cedar Rapids or Iowa City once. I had to drive about 40 miles out of the city to find an opening that wasn't a smoking room. Why? A girls volleyball tournament was in town. Small cities do not plan to have enough room. They do enjoy jacking up prices to take advantage of a shortage they created.
This is ridiculous from a business plan stand point, most pointedly, "Small cities do not plan to have enough room."
What do you propose the hospitality industry in a smaller city should do? Construct & have an excess inventory of hotel/motel rooms available year round that sit empty most of the time just so that on the extraordinary occasions when large scale or multiple events do occur, that there will be adequate inventory of rooms for every one under the sun? From a business plan sense that is not how the hospitality industry operates or makes a profit. Such a poor business plan would bankrupt the motels/hotels.
The inventory supply problem is not limited to small cities, by the way. I live in a metro that is one of the largest/busiest convention trade centers in America. Even here on extraordinary occasions there is a shortage of hotel/motel rooms & conventioneers/special event attendees are forced to stay in far flung locations.
An understanding of inventory fundamentals of supply and demand should be part and parcel of a business college education.
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Old 10-16-2014, 02:24 PM
 
231 posts, read 340,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atler8
What do you propose the hospitality industry in a smaller city should do?
Well, I imagine companies like Holiday Inn looking at a market like Dubuque and asking, "How can we charge about the same for rooms here as we do in the bigger cities?" If the answer is not providing enough rooms, my experience suggests that's exactly the route you'll see pursued. The business model used by chain hotels depends on inflated rates, even when it's not practical. The big companies are playing the national game and aren't worried about how that negatively impacts cities like Dubuque, so long as the profits keep rolling in.

I think when we had more regular people owning hotels, the market was a lot healthier. But the tax structures and laws are skewed in favor of megacorps. We should review that, but isn't that wishful thinking?
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Old 10-16-2014, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Jonesboro
3,617 posts, read 3,562,704 times
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Tax laws have been changed to the benefit of mega corporations and to the detriment of small businesses through a well-funded & long-lasting effort. Big business has lobbied hard & will not flinch in allowing this to change through their deep pocketed lobbying of Congress.
Sadly, the US Chamber of Commerce, supposedly a bulwark designed to benefit all sizes & types of business interests, caters on a national level almost exclusively to the desires of big businesses.
For now, Joe Main Street Businessman is screwed.
Nevertheless, what I wrote earlier about the capacity & overcapacity issues of the hospitality industry are still true.
An oversupply of capacity that is not utilized & is instead underutilized over the long run does not form a sound business model.
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Old 10-17-2014, 08:38 AM
 
11,288 posts, read 23,252,767 times
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Any weekend with a home football game during the fall is going to completely book rooms anywhere near Iowa City, been that way for decades and makes perfect sense.

Every school has a homecomig in the fall (isn't that national?). It's good for the hotels.
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