Commission pushes for regulation of Airbnb-style accommodations, SAIT

As part of its efforts to promote transparency in the short-term rental sector, the Commission on Monday adopted a proposal for a regulation aimed at improving transparency and helping public authorities to ensure the balanced development of the sector within the framework sustainable tourism.

According to the announcement, while short-term rental bookings benefit landlords and tourists, they may worry some local communities struggling with issues such as a lack of affordable housing. The new rules will improve the collection and sharing of data by owners and online platforms. This, in turn, will help to develop effective and proportionate local policies to address the challenges and seize the opportunities associated with the short-term rental sector.

The proposed new rules will help improve transparency in the identification and activity of lessors of short-term rental properties, as well as the rules with which they must comply, and will facilitate the registration of lessors. They will also address the current fragmented way online platforms exchange data, ultimately helping to prevent illegal recordings. Overall, this will contribute to the sustainability of the tourism ecosystem and its digital transition.

Short-term rentals account for around a quarter of all tourist accommodation in the EU.

The proposed new framework:

– When established by national authorities, it will harmonize registration requirements for lessors and properties offered for short-term rental: registration systems must be fully online and user-friendly. The same set of relevant information about owners and their properties, namely “who, what and where”, should be required. Lessors must be assigned a unique registration number upon registration.

– clarify the rules for displaying and controlling the registration number: online platforms should allow lessors to display registration numbers more easily on their platforms. They should also perform spot checks to ensure lessors are recording and displaying their numbers correctly. Public authorities will be able to suspend registration numbers and require non-compliant lessors to be removed from platforms.

– streamline data sharing between online platforms and public authorities: online platforms will be required to share automated data on the number of overnight stays and tenants with public authorities once a month. Simpler reporting options are provided for small and micro platforms. This data will be made available to public authorities via national “single digital entry points”. This will contribute to the development of a well-targeted policy.

– allow the re-use of data in aggregated form: the data produced under this proposal will contribute, in aggregated form, to Eurostat’s tourism statistics and feed into the next European data space on tourism. This data will help in the development of new services related to tourism.

– develop an effective enforcement framework: Member States will monitor the implementation of this transparency framework and impose appropriate sanctions if the obligations of this Regulation are not respected.

Following steps

The Commission proposal will be debated with a view to its adoption by the European Parliament and the Council.
After its adoption and entry into force, Member States will have two years to implement the necessary data exchange mechanisms.


In the EU, short-term rentals are growing rapidly, largely thanks to the online economy. They account for around 25% of all tourist accommodation in the EU and their numbers are growing rapidly across the continent. This trend was confirmed during the COVID crisis: more short-term rental bookings were made for the summers of 2020 and 2021 than for the corresponding periods in 2018. Moreover, compared to the same period in 2021, the number of bookings increased by 138% in the first half of 2022. For tenants, owners and many communities across the EU, short-term rentals have become essential, posing both opportunities and challenges.

[This article was translated from its Greek original]

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