Is Taylor Swift Bigger Than the Olympics?

Summary :

  • 20-30% of attendees at Taylor Swift’s four concerts in Paris were American.
  • Expedia recorded a 40% increase in stays in Paris on its American platform during the singer’s tour dates.
  • According to Expedia, 44% of travelers say they’re willing to travel for concerts. This is known as “tour tourism.”
  • In Lyon, hotel occupancy rates reached 87% for the June 2 concert, an increase of 220% compared to the same dates in 2023.

Taylor Swift kicked off her much-awaited European tour earlier this month with four concerts in the City of Love, a fitting opening for an artist who’s well-loved the world over.

With 26.1 billion streams on Spotify in 2023 and a recent album reaching one billion streams on the platform, Taylor Swift is the most listened to artist of all time. What’s more, her tours create verifiable events, attracting fans from all over the world.

The Eras Tour, which is expected to bring Swift more than $4 billion according to the Washington Post, has more than 150 dates in 20 different countries. But Swift and her fans aren’t the only ones to benefit from the tour—it’s also paying off big for lodging providers.

Let’s take a look at how Taylor Swift’s European tour is affecting the travel industry, and what you can do to capitalize on this and similar events.

Taylor Swift: a Love Story for lodging providers

An Expedia Group survey conducted by OnePoll on 2024 travel trends shows that this year more than ever, superstar concerts are greatly influencing travelers’ destination choices. It’s now quite common to plan a trip specifically for the sake of attending an unforgettable concert, a phenomenon known as “tour tourism.”

Why? For some, it’s because ticket prices vary considerably from one city to the next. For others, it’s to attend multiple concerts in a single tour—a common occurrence among Swifties.

Of all the European cities hosting a Taylor Swift concert, Paris has the most searches for stays on Expedia, surpassing London, Edinburgh, Dublin, and Lisbon. The online travel agency also notes a considerable increase in interest in several cities hosting the Eras Tour, with an increase in searches of 700% for Liverpool, 260% for Dublin, 35% for Paris, and 20% for Lyon compared to the same dates the previous year.

In Lyon, specifically, hotel occupancy rates reached record levels for the June 2 concert: MKG Consulting shares that occupancy rates for this date hit 87%, representing a year-over-year increase of 220%. Mathilde Carpentier, director of Lyon’s tourist office, confirms that the trend is the same for vacation rentals.

American Swifties at the top of the charts

In its study, Expedia notes that American fans are the first to travel to see their idol. The booking site recorded a 40% increase on its American platform for stays in Paris during the tour dates.

Notably, between 20-30% of spectators at the Parisian concerts were American. Many Swifties testify that it is more cost-effective to come to Paris (flight and accommodations included!) than to attend a concert in the United States. One of the reasons is that prices on Ticketmaster, the largest platform for purchasing concert tickets, are fixed in France, unlike in the United States, where prices have reached record highs.

So, is Taylor Swift bigger than the Paris Olympics?

We’ve already heard that Taylor Swift trained for her three-hour-long concerts by singing her entire setlist while running every day for six months leading up to the Eras Tour. Her performances are both artistic and athletic feats—but are they also more popular than the Summer Olympics?

Among American travelers, the answer seems to be a resounding “yes”: According to Jack Ezon, the director of the New York-based luxury travel agency Embark Beyond, Swift generated five times more reservations from American travelers for them than the Paris Olympic Games.

Ezon also noted that the average length of stay is three nights even if 20% of travelers plan to continue their trip to attend other concerts, such as in London or Lyon. A third of the agency’s reservations are for mother-daughter trips.

These numbers are even more impressive given the figures we recently released in our report on the Paris Olympics, including five-times-higher vacation rental rates, millions of tourists coming from all over the world, and record occupancy rates.

Although this example may not be the norm, it perfectly illustrates the extent of the enthusiasm Taylor Swift generates and the significant economic impact of her concerts. The star’s popularity and influence extend far beyond music, generating massive tourism and boosting the local economies of the cities she visits.

For example, fans are spending on accommodations, restaurants, and shopping, contributing to an unexpected economic boom, especially for smaller cities. The frenzy around her concerts also puts an international spotlight on their host cities, as was the case with the city of Lyon.

What’s more, this phenomenon highlights the ability of large-scale cultural events to compete with global sporting events as tourist attractions.

Take advantage of tours to boost your vacation rental business

According to figures from Expedia, 44% of travelers would be willing to visit a new destination in order to attend a concert. As festival season begins, here are some tips for leveraging music and other global events for your vacation rental business.

Plan in advance

The key to success is advance planning. If your vacation rental is located in a large city, check the dates of upcoming concerts, festivals, and other major events that could attract travelers.

Then, carry out targeted marketing initiatives to promote your rental to travelers and capitalize on the increased demand. For example, optimize your booking website and your listings on third-party platforms by:

  • Highlighting your proximity to the event
  • Communicating about upcoming concerts or festivals
  • Using relevant keywords to attract interested visitors
  • Offering a special package for event attendees

By planning ahead, you can adjust your rates, prepare your property, and maximize your revenue during these peak demand periods. Careful preparation will put you ahead of the competition and help you attract bookings as soon as event dates are announced.

Use dynamic pricing

For especially high-demand dates, such as Taylor Swift concerts, using revenue management and dynamic pricing strategies is essential to optimize both your rates and occupancy. Analyzing your competition, demand, and the current market enables you to remain competitive while taking full advantage of these unique international events.

If you don’t want or have time to carry out this strategy yourself, a dynamic pricing tool is a safe bet. For example, Lodgify Dynamic Pricing is a cinch to implement while still giving you full control over your vacation rental rates—as well as an average increase of 20% more revenue.

Adapt to international demand

The diversity of travelers for large events can influence demand and create new opportunities for vacation rental hosts and property managers. This was certainly the case for certain American Swift fans, who didn’t hesitate to stay in high-end accommodations for their stay in Paris.

Here are some tips to adapt your vacation rental to the international market during large-scale events:

  • Translate your communications: Make sure you have your welcome letter, listing descriptions, and house rules available in multiple languages to accommodate foreign travelers. Lodgify’s AI assistant can help you automatically draft responses to all your future guests’ messages and inquiries in many languages.
  • Offer flexible booking conditions: Offer flexible booking policies to accommodate the needs of international travelers, who may be subject to unforeseen travel constraints such as flight delays or last-minute changes of plans. You may even want to set up self check-in for added flexibility during arrivals and departures.
  • Highlight local attractions: Share details about local tourist attractions, restaurants, and activities in your listing descriptions to help international travelers plan their trips and experience local culture. Consider leaving extra details about public transportation and upcoming events.

Diversify your distribution channels

Listing on popular international booking platforms such as Airbnb, Vrbo,, and Expedia can help you reach a wide audience and maximize your visibility for large events. You can also encourage direct bookings through a booking website.

Of course, when listing on multiple booking channels at the same time, it’s essential to use a channel manager to keep your calendars up to date—especially when demand is high. A channel manager can help you avoid double bookings by syncing your calendars and availability across all your booking platforms.

The show must go on!

Taylor Swift’s European concerts sparked a tourism phenomenon, but it doesn’t end with the Eras Tour. “Tour tourism” will likely play a significant role in future travel trends, so it’s crucial that vacation rental hosts know how to make the most of it.

That means being aware of upcoming events, adapting to international demand, and investing in a dynamic pricing tool to optimize your rates and a channel manager to sync your calendars. Above all, plan in advance to make sure you don’t miss out on all that these events have to offer your business.

Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to having no Blank Space in your booking calendar. Are you ready for it?

Featured image source: Wikimedia Commons via the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

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