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Demand has similarly pushed up prices on vacation rental platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo. Image Credit: AFP

Paris: Hotel prices in Paris during the 2024 Olympics are already increasing by more than three-and-a-half times the usual summer rates, less than a year ahead of the games.

Travelers heading to the French capital can expect to pay about $685 a night for a three-star hotel, compared with around $178 for a typical July stay, according to data from Google. Prices for four-star hotels are hitting around $953 during the Olympics, up from the usual $266.

The city expects more than 11 million visitors during the Olympics, 3.3 million of whom are traveling from outside the greater Paris region or internationally and would need accommodations. For those arrivals, there are about 280,000 rooms available per day across the greater Paris region, a spokeswoman for the Paris tourism office said.

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Luxury consumers will be spared the worst inflation rates during the games. Five-star hotels are seeing relatively smaller price spikes than their typically affordable neighbors, with rates of $1,607 a night, compared with $625 for a typical July stay. That means for the same price as a 20-square-meter (215-square-foot) room at the five-star Demeure Montaigne off the chic Avenue Montaigne - where you can watch the Eiffel Tower light up from your bed -you’ll now get just a 16-square-meter room at the more modest Hotel Mogador by the Galeries Lafayette, with charming exposed wooden beams but few amenities.

“More affordable” options available during the Olympics are commonly commanding prices that would be typical of luxury hotels - between $500 and $600, according to a spokesperson from Expedia Group, referring to the inventory on that platform. “We recommend that travelers plan early to secure their hotels before availability becomes limited,” she said.

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The average daily rate in Paris during the Olympics is $536 before cleaning fees, nearly three times the $195 rate for the same period this past summer, according to short-term rental data provider AirDNA.

Rooms are filling up quickly regardless - 45 per cent of rooms in Paris already reserved during the games, according to data from tourism research firm MKG. Typically only 3 per cent of rooms are booked a year ahead.

Some hotels may also be leaving some of their rooms unlisted in the hopes of selling them at a higher price as the opening ceremony starts to feel more imminent, particularly if they feel that rates for delegations, negotiated years ago with Olympic officials and without accounting for current inflation, puts them at a disadvantage, MKG CEO Vanguelis Panayotis said.”That’s put hotels in a tough spot, and it might push them to make up for it by trying to set higher prices later for the public,” Panayotis said.