A hostel owner in Victoria, Australia believes her businesses are no longer viable because of competition from Airbnb.
Mohya Davies has run a backpackers hostel and holiday apartments in Foster, near Wilsons Promontory in eastern Victoria, for 15 years, but is shutting both businesses at the end of the month.
In response to the growth of Airbnb in the area she said she had thought about joining but did not feel comfortable with the online marketing.
“We thought about marketing ourselves through our option, but being the age that I am I’m not good at Facebook and online stuff,” she said. “I find it a bit threatening. It would involve a lot more work and economically the same amount of money."
This is a shame since although so many hostel owners around the world have felt the pinch from Airbnb, just as many also know that if you don't change with the times you'll get left behind.
Naturally, Airbnb rejects that its presence in the market is contributing to the closure of other accommodation providers, saying "Tourism accommodation is not a zero-sum game. For the Airbnb community to grow no providers have to shrink.”
They added that they are open to changes in regulation, which is exactly what YHA is calling for.
YHA has said “The issue is a lot of Airbnb properties are renting the whole property, it’s not just a room in their house. They’re defacto hostels and hotels in everything but in name."
“We do believe … there should be a level playing field and the Airbnb property should be subject to similar safety controls — council planning development, fire safety regulations — because the safety of the guest is paramount.”
What are your thoughts on Airbnb and the hostel market? Have you struggled because of it? Do you market on it? Share below.
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