Czech Republic considering tougher Airbnb regulations

Prague, Czech Republic – The Czech government is currently discussing new rules to regulate Airbnb and other short-term housing rentals across the country.

Jakub Michálek, leader of the Pirate Party parliamentary group behind the initiative, said it sought to amend the law on commercial conditions in the tourism industry.

The overall aim would be to give more power to local municipalities to introduce and enforce short-term housing rules and allow them to set higher penalties for breaches.

Repeated offenses could result in fines of up to 10 million Kc (around €400,000) or even a ban on activity, Michálek noted, adding that the proposal enjoys a “fairly broad agreement” between the parties in the power.

People who only rent out their apartments or houses occasionally and whose corresponding annual income does not exceed 30,000 Kc (€1,200) would be exempt from the proposal.

The amendment, which would be piloted by the Ministry of Regional Development and could come into force in January 2023, would help the Czech Republic catch up with other European cities – such as Amsterdam, Paris or Berlin – which already have strict rules in place. .

A previous tourism law reform meant to introduce legal obligations on platforms such as Airbnb failed to upset the status quo in the Czech Republic due to lack of enforceability.

Airbnb has long been the subject of criticism, especially in the capital Prague and other popular cities like Český Krumlov and Karlovy Vary, where it is blamed – as in other top tourist destinations – for the depopulation of the center -city, its negative impact on the traditional hotel industry. , and the deterioration of the quality of life in certain neighborhoods due to the high concentration of tourists.

The company has taken preliminary steps to deal with the growing global backlash, including a recent to forbid about holding “disruptive parties and events” at properties listed on Airbnb, regardless of size.

To dig deeper, you can read about the work of “Stop Airbnb”, a Prague-based movement organizing grassroots actions against the co-housing platform.

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