Not everyone has a reason to cheer. But there is also nobody who wanted to complain that this year the event will take place again, which not only constitutes one of the cultural highlights in urban life, but traditionally also means a good time for trade and hotels, restaurants and the taxi industry. In recent years, the Book Fair was no longer a guarantee for busy hotels, especially for accommodation providers - there are now simply too many hotels in the city and too many exhibitors at the fair who keep their employees' attendance times shorter than in the past . But receptions and parties, everywhere in the city, in hotels and restaurants, belong to the book fair like the letters to the text; normally.How is the hotel and catering industry doing during the 2021 Book Fair?

Jacqueline Vogt

Editor in the Rhein-Main-Zeitung, responsible for the Rhein-Main section of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung.

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The first major presence fair since the beginning of the pandemic, which is taking place in Frankfurt again, is a positive signal, suitable to bring “a revitalization into the market”, “a small highlight”.

That's what Angelika Heyer from the Frankfurt Hotel Alliance, an association of 62 companies with a total of 14,500 rooms, says and 90 euros were offered.

Reports from the past few days that hotel prices in Frankfurt had skyrocketed were not true.

"Some may have loaded higher rates at first, but quickly withdrew them."

A little is better than nothing

Above all, the guests from overseas were missing. That says Robert Mangold, Chairman of the Hotel and Restaurant Association in Frankfurt and Managing Director of the Tiger & Palmen Group. "The overpressure is not there yet, but nobody expected that." A hotel like the Jumeirah in the city center is currently being used to capacity at 60 percent, and such a number "would have been happy half a year ago".

For the catering industry, Mangold draws a picture with different colors.

Italian restaurants, for example, did not complain like that, nor did anyone else who had a concept tailored to a specific audience.

For the two-star Lafleur restaurant from the Tiger & Palmen Group, which has only been open three days a week since the second lockdown, he will introduce a fourth opening day at the end of October, says Mangold.

All in all, the industry is hoping for 2022, when Messe Frankfurt wants to host all of its events again.

Hope for 2022

The Frankfurt taxi industry has been severely affected by the pandemic-related collapse in trade fair business this year and last. "In the worst of times we had a 90 percent drop in sales," says Hans-Peter Kratz, chairman of the Frankfurt taxi association. In these days, when the book industry comes together in the city, companies have no problems "covering that little bit of trade fair". That little fair. It was different before Corona. In the past, according to Kratz, the main station was teeming with trade fair guests, whether they wanted to go to Ambiente, the sanitary ware fair or the book fair.

“The day before the fair and on the first day there was always a lot,” says Solaiman Khel, who has been driving taxis in Frankfurt for 14 years.

The 55-year-old taxi driver pointed to the long line of waiting cars in front of the train station on Thursday.

"Nobody is coming now." Over the summer, sales in the taxi industry temporarily rose to 40 percent of those before the pandemic, says Hans-Peter Kratz.

And now?

"At the moment there is not really anything noticeable about the trade fair."

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