Airbnb warns of Delta impact on bookings, shares plummet

Airbnb said its bookings this quarter could be affected by the Covid-19 Delta variant and a slowdown in the rate of vaccination in the United States, causing its shares to fall by more than 4%.

The company expects nights and experiences booked in the current quarter to slow down from the second quarter and remain below 2019 levels.

“As we roll out of the second quarter and into the third, we have a combination of fewer bookings for the fall, just considering the nature of some seasonality and any kind of potential impact on Covid issues.” said CFO Dave Stephenson. during a post-benefit call with investors.

The hugely popular global app, which has fought back heavily since it was hit hard at the start of the pandemic last year, saw more than a four-fold increase in bookings to $ 13.4 billion in the second quarter .

He expects the third quarter to be the strongest on record as more people check into his vacation rentals after Covid-19 restrictions eased in most major economies.

Active listings were roughly flat throughout the health crisis and increased during the quarter, particularly in non-urban destinations in Europe and North America, the company said.

“In popular entertainment markets, you see platforms offering increasingly generous incentives for hosts to ensure quality inventory to meet demand,” wrote Dan Thomas, analyst at Third Bridge.

Hotels and other accommodation providers suffered a severe blow last year as Covid-19 travel restrictions shut down much of their operations.

Airbnb was applauded, however, for quickly focusing on local and long-term rentals, attracting people looking for accommodation to rent for remote work or that didn’t require flying.

The company expects to report a record third quarter adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) and margin.

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