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How many hotel rooms in Singapore? Roland Berger Interview

Talisa Lim asked on Apr 28, 2019

Hi, I was asked to estimate the no. of hotel rooms in Singapore.

I did: No. of tourists in a day X % staying in hotels / Avg no. of ppl/room

For # of tourists in a day: Typical airport/runway calculation + Home tourists

She said I was extremely off and gave me the no. of tourists in a year - 17 Mil.

After that I did 17 M X 80% (no. who stay in hotel rooms) / 2 (pax per room) / 365

She said it was still off. The answer is 4k...? How should I do this?

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replied on Apr 29, 2019
McKinsey Engagement Manager & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 90+ candidates secure MBB offers
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The proposed solution 4k hotel rooms in Singapore is absolutely ridiculous. Nothing more to add. Either you misunderstood the question/setting/information, or the RB interviewer doesn't know what she is talking about.

Maybe it was a test to see how you react to "guidance" that is clearly off the mark - but this would be quite weird in my view.

This is just strange...

Cheers, Sidi

Kay replied on Apr 29, 2019
Preparing for McKinsey interviews.

I would agree that the number of hotel rooms sounds off - if her tourism numbers are correct, Singapore should have an average 46575 tourists per day, and that's conservative because I've assumed each tourist only stays for a day (just divided number of tourists by 365). Just to accomodate those, there would need to be far more than 4k hotel rooms. The only other explanation if both her provided figures are correct is that:

a) was the actual question perhaps about the number of hotels in Singapore? (I think this is most likely!)

b) did you need to assume that a far smaller percent stays in hotels? (I don't think this is accurate though)

However, in terms of method I think you were spot on! Perhaps I'd have factored in somewhere that not all rooms are occupied 100% of the time, but that would've actually increased your number of hotel rooms anyway.

Anonymous A replied on Apr 28, 2019

I actually tried to solve this problem and couldnt get to 4K anyhow. This number just sounds ridiculously small to me. So I searched online and it said total room number hit 52000 in 2015.

Fabian updated his answer on Apr 28, 2019

Hi, I believe you're forgetting the average length of stay, which you need to multiply your number by. Also, in case that's not included in the 17M, you need to consider business travellers as well.


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