HOTEL rates have been slashed in some cases to a third of what they were this time last year but at least visitors are now arriving here in substantial numbers.
One inverness riverside Hotel had 60 rooms occupied one night this week, a huge increase within a week of reopening when occupancy rates were much lower over the first few days.
And bookings show that the increase is set to continue.
The growth pattern is being replicated in other city hotels.
There were fears that many people would write off this year and plan holidays for next year instead. But early signs show that tourists will be travelling north in numbers to make the most of what remains of the holiday year.
The bargain basement prices on offer, unlikely to be available any time in the future, will also play a big part in that.
Concerns that Nicola Sturgeon’s warning of people from England potentially being quarantined at the border would be a deterrent to them travelling here have also proved unfounded, with the First Minister’s proclamation being dismissed as little more than a political stunt.
Hotels in the Highlands and across Scotland have gone out of business but the fairly rapid upturn in bookings mean prospects for the multi million pound industry look much brighter now even than they did a month ago, when there fears of a dearth of tourists and widespread closures and job losses.