In several countries, the accommodation app Airbnb It has gained a lot of popularity due to the service characteristics that it offers to people who are looking for more personal and intimate experiences, away from the big hotels. However, although this has been good for the economy and business, it has also become a problem.
At least that’s what city authorities like Amsterdam, where the local government determined to ban vacation rentals, including digital platform systems, this in three areas that make up the center of the town as of July 1.
Tourism is the cause
Specifically, the areas where the total veto applies are: Burgwallen-Oude Zijde, Burgwallen-Nieuwe Zijde and Grachtengordel-Zuid. « In these neighborhoods, tourism has such great pressure on the quality of life of residents that it is necessary to ban vacation rentals, » said the city council in a statement quoted by Europa Press.
In addition to the above, it was determined that vacation rentals will be allowed in the rest of the capital of the Netherlands, but this will be under a special permit and can be done for a maximum of 30 days a year, and for groups of no more of four people.
According to local authorities, among the arguments defended to make such decisions, the “pressure” that the influx of tourism is exerting on the quality of life of residents was highlighted.
In this regard, the Amsterdam councilor for housing, Laurens Ivens, said that a consultation was held among the 780 inhabitants and organizations, in which approximately 75 percent spoke in favor.
A theme for local cities
As we mentioned at the beginning of the note, Airbnb has become one of the main applications of the sharing economy that has gained preference in society since, on the one hand, it became the alternative for many people to be able to generate income independently, while for travelers it is a way of having greater control of their cases, the site where they stay and the geolocation for the destination they want to visit, among other factors.
However, it is not new to point out that the application has faced conflicts since with the hotel industry that sees it as a competitor with advantages because it is not subject to the same regulations and, precisely, with the local governments that have prepared to regulate the operation of this type of services.
One of the problems that have been identified is the multiplication of accommodation offers. An example of this is what was revealed by a report released by Magnet, which indicates that since 2014 tourist apartments began to be an upward trend, the figure has not stopped growing to the point of affecting the supply of local housing in the center of some cities like Edinburgh, Barcelona, New York, and London.
In fact, in the capital of the Netherlands, Airbnb has established itself as a serious competitor in the hotel sector and has transformed the hotel industry, as Statista suddenly reveals. In this European city, for example, the application registered approximately 1.97 million of overnight stays during 2018, which is significantly more compared to other major cities such as The Hague, Utrecht and Rotterdam.
In fact, the data cited by the Amsterdam City Council indicates that until the beginning of this year, “one in 15 homes in Amsterdam is offered online”. Hence the concern of local authorities to regulate the scope of this type of accommodation.
The measure may result in the benefit of residents, however, for the traveler it could represent a limitation to opt for this type of services in case of visiting this city… perhaps an indirect beneficiary will be hotels?
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