Airbnb is having a worse season in Prague than last year. Management companies leave the market

The second covid summer hit the short-term housing market even harder than last year.

The latest statistics on the use of the Airbnb rental platform show that the number of accommodation offers remains the same as during the winter confinements, and is therefore several times lower than last summer.

Many businesses that operated short-term rentals have had to cease operations due to a sharp drop in tourism.

In Prague, around 13,500 apartments are intended for short-term accommodation, but only a fraction of them are actively rented. Over the past six months, according to new data, only 1,215 apartments were actually used, that is, they received visitors at least once a month.

For the whole of 2020 there were 8,796 offers, in previous years the annual values ​​exceeded 12,000 apartments.

“For tourists who have already visited Prague, the idea of ​​returning to the city during the pandemic is impossible. Thanks to the unified European strategy on the use of covid passports, some foreign tourists visit the city, but they remain a minority “, Observes the President of the Czech Association of Private Landlords and Residents Matěj Koutný. A year ago in June, 1,183 apartments were rented on a short-term basis, this year only 145.

Prague City Councilwoman Hana Kordová Marvanová (United Force for Prague) continues to enforce the legal regulations of the service. “City authorities not only register complaints about noise, but the high number of apartments used for short-term tourist accommodation has a negative impact on the functionality of the city, the amount of rent and fees, and the general apartment availability,” she said. said.

Number of apartments listed as active on Airbnb in Prague

According to Airbnb, the scale of booking cancellations around the world has decreased compared to last year, but it remains higher than before the pandemic. Trends in the use of short-term rentals have also changed. While previously the service was used by smaller groups and couples, families are increasingly interested in this type of accommodation.

Brian Chesky, the company’s co-founder and CEO, also believes the market has been affected by the global shift to working from home. “About 24% of Airbnb guests now book stays of at least 28 days, whereas before the pandemic, only 14% of guests booked stays that long.”

The declining use of short-term rentals in Prague has caused hard times for entrepreneurs who make a living managing these apartments. “I can confirm that many entities have been forced out of the market. Some expanded their business with long-term leases, but a large part was forced out of the market,” said Koutný, who said the government did not support these entrepreneurs enough.

The management company Carebnb had to leave the market. “Unfortunately, we had to cease the activities of the company due to the current situation. We do not know if we will start working again,” said founder Pavel Nádvorník.

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