Airbnb, the world’s leading marketplace for booking, discovering, and listing unique spaces around the world, today released a study that highlights Airbnb’s impact on local economies.
The study was conducted by HR&A Advisors, an industry-leading real estate and economic development consulting firm, and demonstrates that Airbnb provides a major economic boost both to its users and the neighborhoods and cities where they visit and live. HR&A conducts sophisticated economic impact analyses for a wide variety of industries and clients, and cities around the United States come to HR&A for guidance on fostering strong and sustainable local economies and attracting new sources of economic activity. Drawing on this expertise, HR&A developed a customized approach to quantify the unique impacts of the new kinds of tourism that Airbnb brings to San Francisco.
The study found that people who rent their homes on Airbnb use the income they earn to stay afloat in difficult economic times. Additionally, the study determined that travelers who use Airbnb enjoy longer stays, spend more money in the cities they visit, and bring income to less-touristed neighborhoods.
“Airbnb represents a new form of travel,” says Airbnb CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky. “This study shows that Airbnb is having a huge positive impact – not just on the lives of our guests and hosts, but also on the local neighborhoods they visit and live in.”
The economic impact study underscores the significant benefits that Airbnb, a pioneer of the new sharing economy, has on cities and their residents. Some highlights from the study’s findings:
- From April 2011 to May 2012, guests and hosts utilizing Airbnb have contributed $56 million in total spending to San Francisco’s economy, $43.1 million of which supported local businesses throughout the city’s diverse neighborhoods.
- 90% of Airbnb hosts rent the homes they live in to visitors on an occasional basis, and nearly half the income they make is spent on living expenses (rent/mortgage, utilities, and other bills).
- Airbnb guests stay an average of 5.5 days and spend $1,045 during their stay on food, shopping and transportation, compared to hotel guests who stay an average of 3.5 days and spend $840.
- 72% of Airbnb properties in San Francisco are located outside the central hotel corridor. More than 90% of Airbnb guests visiting San Francisco prefer to stay in neighborhoods that are “off the beaten track.” Over 60% of Airbnb guest-spending occurs in the neighborhoods in which the guests stay.
Founded in August of 2008 and based in San Francisco, Calif., Airbnb is a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodations around the world – online or from a mobile phone. Whether an apartment for a night, a castle for a week, or a villa for a month, Airbnb connects people to unique travel experiences at any price point, in more than 30,000 cities and 192 countries. And with world-class customer service and a growing community of users, Airbnb is the easiest way for people to monetize their extra space and showcase it to an audience of millions.