Short-term Rental News Digest – September 2019

Any host who wants to have a successful short-term rental business should always keep up with the basic industry news and trends. Read the short-term rental news digest below and learn about the most important events in the industry!

One of the things that Airbnb has taught us is that times of crisis can bring communities together. This was once again proved when Airbnb’s Open Homes Program was initiated during the month of September. While the southern hemisphere is starting to prepare for its high season, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico and the eastern coast of the United States were hit by Hurricane Dorian. Seven years after the Open Homes Program was initiated for the first time, Airbnb hosts have once again shown the world that the sharing economy can, in fact, have a huge positive impact. Let’s find out more about how the short-term rental industry has helped to create opportunities during the month of September.      

Expedia Group acquires CanadaStays

Expedia Group acquires CanadaStays

CanadaStays, which was established in 2008, will join the vacation rental section of Vrbo. Although they have already been in partnership for four years, the Expedia Group has only completed the acquisition now and have bought all the shares of CanadaStays. 

Property managers and owners who have been using CanadaStays will now also be able to access the tools and data of Vrbo, ultimately making it easier for them to increase their income by reaching more guests. Mark Bordo, the founder,  and CEO of CanadaStays commented, “Joining the Expedia Group and Vrbo family is a natural fit for us and one that we are very happy to be a part of.”

VRMA Conference to be held in October

VRMA will be hosting the 2019 VRMA International Conference from 13 to 16 October in New Orleans, Louisiana. During the conference, attendees will get the opportunity to hear from vacation rental managers, leading suppliers, vendor representatives and subject matter experts – all under one roof! The iGMS team is also heading to the event and will be excited to meet all the members of the STR community at our booth #300. Be sure, you are invited!

The VRMA Conference is a unique chance to get invaluable insights that will help to take your vacation rental business to the next level. There will be over 60 educational sessions. iGMS, as one of the thought leaders in the industry, is certainly not going to stand aside. Our own co-founder and chief technology officer, Igor Kostin, has prepared to give a speech on the Top 5 Smart Strategies to Surviving the Supersaturated STR Market. Therefore, if you want to deliver a first-class guest experience, don’t miss out on this upcoming conference as it promises to provide many practical tips and resources. 

Airbnb-style hotel planned for Sacramento

Plans for a unique short-term rental complex in the capital city of California has been submitted for approval. If approved, this complex will be built in a commercial zone between the Sacramento Convention Center and the Memorial Auditorium in Sacramento, California. The 14i Hotel (that is what it will be called) will have 19 units, but no on-site staff or official lobby. 

Airbnb’s Open Homes Program Launched Again

Airbnb’s Open Homes Program

In 2012, the Open Homes Program was born when some hosts offered their homes free of charge to those affected by Hurricane Sandy. This initiative was successful and has since then been launched over ten times in reaction to storms, hurricanes,  and other natural disasters. 

According to Kellie Bentz, the head of Global Disaster Response and Relief at Airbnb, the Open Homes program has housed 30, 000 people in more than 60 countries. During the past month, it was yet again activated to help those who have been displaced by the recent Hurricane Dorian. Disaster relief workers and displaced residents were helped by the Airbnb Open Homes program till mid-September. 

Staycations on the increase in the UAE

Internal data of Airbnb has revealed that increasingly more people from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are opting for staycations. According to AirDNA, the prices of vacation rentals in Dubai have decreased by more than five percent from 2018, making it the perfect time to plan a staycation in the City of Gold. A salsa lesson in Dubai, a cultural walk in Abu Dhabi and a Chinese tea ceremony have been a few of the most popular Airbnb Experiences offered in the UAE.

Airbnb partners with Atlas Obscura

Airbnb Experiences

The Airbnb community can now also explore some of the most unique places across the globe thanks to a new partnership between Airbnb and Atlas Obscura, an international community of explorers who have put together a huge database of some of the most impressive places around the globe. 

Joe Zadeh, the Vice President and Head of Experiences at Airbnb explains, “Atlas Obscura has excelled at providing the kind of unique and memorable experiences that travelers are seeking.” There are more than 30 Experiences and 10 Adventures in over 10 countries that guests will be able to book via the Airbnb platform! A couple of the most interesting Experiences include  The Chicago Underground Scavenger Hunt, Sailing Sardinia’s Hidden Coastlines and Vietnam’s Most Delicious Dishes.

A new sustainability partnership to fight climate change

Climate change affects us all! Therefore, everyone has to take responsibility. This month has also seen Airbnb forge a partnership with the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA). This new partnership will motivate community members of the ATTA who are already focusing on environmental sustainability to host their experiences on the Airbnb platform. Thanks to this partnership, up to $100 000 will be donated to the climate action work completed by the ATTA. Airbnb will also work with the ATTA to conduct research that concentrates on the impact that tourism can have on the fauna and flora of our oceans, mountains, deserts,  and rainforests.

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