New Study: Airbnb Community Contributes AUD $214 Million to Sydney and its Suburbs, Brings Tourists to New Neighbourhoods

Hosts Use Money They Earn to Pay Bills

Airbnb, the world's leading marketplace for booking, discovering, and listing unique spaces around the world, today highlighted a study that details Airbnb's positive economic impact on Sydney and its suburbs. Conducted in partnership with BIS Shrapnel, the study found that Airbnb supported AUD $214 million in economic activity in one year in Sydney and throughout the region’s diverse suburbs, including many neighbourhoods and local sites that haven’t benefitted from tourism in the past.

The study also found that the overwhelming majority of Airbnb hosts occasionally share the home they live in and use the money they earn to help pay their bills.

“Airbnb is helping more people see Sydney in a whole new light, by visiting new suburbs they may have never seen before," said Airbnb Asia-Pacific Regional Director Ole Ruch. "This is great news for people in Sydney's suburbs who can earn a little extra money to help them pay their bills and be part of the vibrant Airbnb community.”

“The average visitor spent approximately $1,822 per trip in Sydney and local hosts earned $4,505 per annum,” said said Kurt Lemke, an Economist with BIS Shrapnel. “This represents a strong economic opportunity for the Sydney region.”

The study indicates that the overwhelming majority of Airbnb hosts in Sydney are ordinary residents who rent out the home they live in -- their primary residence -- and use the money to help make ends meet. Most Airbnb hosts are over age 40, employed and use the extra income to pay their mortgage or rent and stay in their homes. And Airbnb guests are more likely to return to Sydney in the future.

Highlights from the study include:

  • Airbnb hosts help their guests discover less-visited locales -- 98 percent of hosts suggest local restaurants, cafes, bars and shops in their neighbourhoods to their guests. Additionally, the Airbnb community supported 1,642 jobs.

  • The typical Airbnb host occasionally rents out the property in which he or she actually lives. 85 percent of Airbnb hosts rent out the home they live in and the typical host earns $4,505 per year by renting 37 nights per year.

  • 59 percent of Airbnb hosts in Sydney are over 40.

  • While the majority of Airbnb hosts are employed, many struggle to make ends meet. 46 percent of Airbnb hosts earn at or below Sydney’s median household income.

  • 48 percent of Airbnb hosts say Airbnb helped them stay in their homes and  60 percent of hosts use Airbnb income to pay their rent or mortgage.

  • 75 percent of Airbnb guests visit Sydney from another country. The average age of Airbnb guests is 42 and 77 percent have at least a college degree.

  • Airbnb helps to increase the number of visitors to Sydney, with 48 percent of Airbnb guests visiting Sydney for the first time. 31 percent say they would not have come to Sydney or stayed as long in Sydney if not for Airbnb. 63 percent of Airbnb guests also say that Airbnb makes them more likely to return to Sydney.

  • Airbnb guests spend AUD $1,822 over the course of their trip compared to average tourists who spend AUD $1,071.

  • Airbnb is complementary to the existing tourism industry in Sydney - 80 percent of Airbnb listings in Sydney are outside of the main tourist areas and the average Airbnb guest spends AUD $1,042 in the neighbourhood where she stays. For example, Airbnb guests spent an estimated $136,020 in Randwick.

The study highlighted today examined data on Airbnb rental activity in Sydney for the 12 months from August 2012 - July 2013.

About Airbnb:

Founded in August of 2008 and based in San Francisco, California, 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.