This week it was announced that Airbnb signed the second MoU with ATA, for continued cooperation to drive sustainable tourism here.
What does it mean?
It means that GOA wants to reach all of our 950 hosts and make sure they submit their 9.5% tax each month along with the $3 environmental fee, per room, per day.
On the other hand, those hosts who are law-abiding and already submit it should be allowed to continue to pay GOA directly.
True, those traveling with Airbnb come to Aruba on shorter vacations, and we could safely say they are budget travelers.
Which in essence runs AGAINST ATA’s policy of promoting the island to demographics with deeper pockets.
Airbnb traveler are NOT in possession of deep pockets, and they could not have visited Aruba without the help of Airbnb, offering reasonably priced places to stay.
(One of my friends reported that In Ruby, a property lists a room with a separate bathroom for $40 a night, which is absurd. Aruba should not offer any accommodations that cheap.)
So, how is Airbnb sustainable, ask the hoteliers? With shorter stays, and more people, we suffer a larger carbon footprint, and a bigger burden on our infrastructure, how can that be good?
Well, it depends on your point of view. According to Airbnb 940 hosts, 51% of them women, nicely supplemented their annual income last year with the help of the platform – I hope they are all tax payers.
BEST OF ALL: All that money stayed in our economy, around 20 million dollars, conservatively. Our hosts used 100% of the money on the island, buying local services, no shareholders, no corporation.
That is a good thing. But now GOA needs to find a way to collect its share.
We all need to help pay for the successful promotion of the island.
AND how is Airbnb sustainable, ask single mothers with kids, and young families, looking for reasonably priced long-term rentals, that are now all rented to tourists.
Aruba absolutely needs government subsidized housing to service this segment of our community. I will ask around.
Home Sharing Community in Aruba
Total Airbnb Guests Arrivals in Aruba: 47,200; Number of hosts: 940; Percentage of female hosts: 51%; Money received per year by a typical host: USD $9,200 – a 77% increase since 2017; Total listings on the platform: 2,300; Total Departures of Guests through Airbnb (Arubans abroad): 5,100.
Home Sharing Community in Curacao
Airbnb is making Curacao affordable and accessible:” In 2018, Airbnb hosts on the island welcomed approximately 23,300 guests with an average trip length of about 8 days.” There are 1,900 listings in Curacao, with more than 950 hosts, more than fifty-seven percent of hosts are female, and seventy-five percent of hosts are between the ages of 30 and 59.