- Hotels hope AirBnB will boost their bookings and revenues during the low season brought by Covid-19
- Hotel industry is still experiencing low demand even after resumption of international flights
The hotel industry is eyeing the AirBnB market to increase booking and raise revenue after the prolonged closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The pandemic has seen profit plunge in the travel and hotel industry due to the reduced numbers of international and domestic tourists due to restrictions on travel and closure of borders.
It has also come in with a new threat to homeowners who have been relying on the hotel services to raise additional income.
Even with the re-opening and resumption of international travel, demand in the industry is still expected to remain lower due to low consumer spending.
AirBnB hosts in the country, majority homeowners, have also suffered significantly together with the traditional hotels and travel companies.
“The pandemic is offering an opportunity for repositioning every property for market. The main drivers of real estate will not significantly change and hence hotels would be joining AirBnB,” said Fusion Capital chief executive Daniel Kamau during a sub-Saharan Africa real estate outlook webinar organized by Absa Group as reported by the Business Daily.
The pandemic has seriously cost Kenya. So far the country has lost Sh80 billion in tourism revenue, about half of last year’s total.
Some players in the hotel industry have however noted that it would be difficult for the establishments to move into AirBnB space. According to the Kenya Association of Hotel Keepers and Caterers CEO Mike Macharia, this will be because the listing of the hospitality business would be difficult for the hotels.
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Macharia said this is because is known as a destination for high-end clientele, who would normally not be looking for bookings on the AirBnB site.
“There is still space for online selling even under normal circumstances. Kenya’s key source markets visit for mountain climbing and safari and would not book on AirBnB,” he said.
For a very long time now, the hotel industry has relied on digital platforms including Trip Advisor, booking.com, and Expedia for online bookings.