Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The PS1.3bn Airbnb Economy: 980,000 Tourists Use Site to Visit London in a Year

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The PS1.3bn Airbnb Economy: 980,000 Tourists Use Site to Visit London in a Year

Article excerpt

Byline: Jonathan Prynn and Rehema Figueiredo

THE number of tourists booking "live like a local" stays in London through Airbnb has doubled in a year to almost one million, figures show today.

The capital's "Airbnb economy" is now worth PS1.3 billion a year, aided by a major relaxation of rules governing the short-term lets.

Airbnb, based in California, said the number of visitors to London increased by 96 per cent to 983,000 in the 12 months to November, when there were 35,000 addresses on the website.

It means the capital is the world's third biggest "Airbnb city", behind Paris and New York.

London got off to a slower start than its rivals, in part because a law from the early Seventies required homeowners to seek planning permission from the council if they wanted to let out their properties for less than three months.

But the red tape and threat of a PS20,000 fine was scrapped in May.

The 24,100 London Airbnb hosts who let out their houses, flats or rooms through the website this year earned an average of PS3,500 each. …

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