Airbnb has today committed to help Ireland enforce its short-term rental rules as part of a series of pledges to help unlock the benefits of hosting for everyday families and protect housing.
The Airbnb Community Tourism and Housing Protection Plan is built on five commitments to support Hosts and help make home sharing part of the solution to the challenges facing everyday families in Ireland, and to help the government enforce the rules.
The plan will be formally launched by Amanda Cupples, General Manager for Northern Europe at Airbnb, at an event in Dublin next week with members of the Irish Host community. Amanda will share Airbnb’s vision for community-led tourism with Hosts and will go on to meet tourism partners in Ireland.
“Airbnb was born during a financial crisis to help families afford their homes and make ends meet,” said Cupples. “As Irish families battle rising living costs and a housing shortage, we want to work with the government to unlock new economic opportunities, help enforce the rules and play our part in protecting housing.”
Airbnb has introduced a range of innovations that make it easy for anyone to host and boost their income. The majority of Hosts in Ireland are everyday families who share their primary home and rent their space for just three nights a month on average. The additional income they earn represents approximately two months of pay for the median Irish household. Among Hosts who shared an entire home, nearly nine in 10 shared only one listing. Recent survey data revealed more than half of Hosts say the additional income helps them afford the rising cost of living, and over a third say it helps them make ends meet. Hosting helps spread guests beyond hotel districts and enables local families and communities to keep the economic benefits generated by tourism for themselves.
The commitments launched today by Airbnb represent the most significant and meaningful package of measures to help make Irish home sharing rules a success and ensure that tourism benefits all Irish communities:
- Enforcing short-term rental rules – Airbnb wants to work with the Irish government to make short-term rental rules enforceable and effective. The introduction of a single Host register for Ireland would establish a clear system for Hosts to follow and give authorities the information they need to enforce the rules and take action against property speculators that are damaging communities. Airbnb would support this initiative by ensuring that only Hosts with a registration number are able to publish listings on the platform, and stands ready to share its experience in devising and implementing such systems around the world with the government.
- Solving tourism supply constraints with community-led tourism – Airbnb will pursue a community tourism approach in Ireland that flexibly boosts the supply of tourist accommodation at peak moments of demand via everyday families occasionally sharing their homes. This approach will help address Irelands’ shortfall of tourist accommodation, provide authentic and affordable stays for guests, and provide new income streams for local families and communities – all without the need for costly building and infrastructure projects. Airbnb is committed to working with tourism bodies, local communities and event organizers to leverage home sharing to benefit families across Ireland.
- New tools to tackle noise and nuisance – The vast majority of Hosts and guests are good neighbors and we take concerns on noise and nuisance seriously. Airbnb already operates a Neighbor Support Line in Ireland – providing a direct line of communication for neighbors to report concerns about listings or guest behaviour to Airbnb – and we want to do more. Across Europe, Airbnb has introduced a range of innovations to tackle anti-social behaviour, including tools that have allowed us to block or redirect reservations from nearly 375,000 people across the UK, France and Spain to help enforce our party ban policy. We will review the potential impact of similar noise and nuisance prevention measures in Ireland with a view to implementing tools that allow us to prevent issues before they start.
- Partnering with the tourism sector and government to diversify tourism – Airbnb commits to working with partners in Ireland to capitalize on the remote worker trend, as part of its ‘Live and Work Anywhere Initiative’. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, a new world of travel has emerged. Together with partners in Ireland, Airbnb commits to creating a one-stop-shop that encourages remote workers to try new locations, while helping to revive tourism and providing economic support to communities after years of travel restrictions. As a global hub for tech workers, Ireland is an important destination for tech talent and business travel. Airbnb is well-positioned to help convert the remote worker trend into a boon for Irish communities. Globally, one in five guests on Airbnb reported using Airbnb to work remotely while travelling in 2021, and nearly half of nights booked from July to December 2021 were for stays of a week or longer. One in five nights booked were for stays of a month or longer.
- Supporting domestic violence survivors and refugees fleeing Ukraine– Airbnb stands with Irish communities to support those in need and during times of crisis. During the pandemic, Airbnb partnered with Safe Ireland and Women’s Aid to support domestic violence survivors. New data shows that nearly a thousand women and children fleeing abuse have been supported by this collaboration and provided with over 4,500 nights in safe accommodation. Airbnb went on to launch the ‘Survivor Fund’ with Safe Ireland – backed by a €350,000 donation from Airbnb – to provide grants to women and children who are escaping abuse. Airbnb today commits to continuing its partnership with Safe Ireland to support survivors.
In response to the war in Ukraine, Airbnb.org announced that it will provide free, short-term accommodation to refugees fleeing Ukraine. Across Europe, more than 42,600 refugees from Ukraine have been connected to free or temporary housing. These stays are funded by Airbnb, donors to the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund, and the generosity of Hosts through Airbnb.org. Airbnb.org is working with partner NGOs to help support Ukrainian refugees in Ireland through a $500,000 grant and access to free accommodation from local Hosts, and stands ready to help further.
To view the full ‘Airbnb Community Tourism and Housing Protection Plan’ click here.