To The Editor:
When you take a hard look at the real Airbnb in The Valley, it’s clear that the typical Airbnb host isn’t running a commercial business any more than someone who has a yard sale a few times a year is running a shopping center (“A look at Airbnb in The Valley,” June 7, 2018). Rather, the typical host in the Green Mountain State brought in about $6,400 last year by opening their home to visitors for just two nights a month.
The flexibility of home sharing and the economic opportunity it provides for families has led to strong growth throughout Vermont. In 2017, 3,900 hosts welcomed 232,000 inbound guest arrivals – a 76 percent rise from 2016.
Airbnb hosts are members of your community. They are women (62 percent of hosts) and seniors (28 percent are 60 or older) and families, sharing their own space to travelers from around the world – who may otherwise have never visited Vermont or enjoyed its natural beauty and unique local wares.
Airbnb is also hardly competition to The Valley’s existing bed-and-breakfast (B&B) community. In fact, as a number of B&B operators recognized in this article, our platform is an increasingly valuable resource for them, with a new suite of tools specifically designed for B&B operators, including lower fees than other online platforms used by B&B operators, no long-term contracts, and filters that help prospective guests spot their dream B&B among the many home shares, boutique hotels and, yes, even the treehouses and yurts that are also on our platform.
Everyone should have the opportunity to experience all that the Mad River Valley has to offer.
Head of Northeast Policy, Airbnb
New York, NY