Market for Airbnb and sharing economy ‘limited’ finds research

Market for Airbnb and sharing economy ‘limited’ finds research

The market for Airbnb and similar accommodation sites among UK holidaymakers may be limited, according to research for Travolution’s sister title Travel Weekly.

A TNS consumer survey, carried out in March, suggests two out of five UK adults (39%) planning an overseas holiday in the next two years have “never thought” about staying with an Airbnb-type host and a further 35% “would not consider” such a host or have “concerns about health and safety”.

The research suggests three out of five prospective overseas holidaymakers may have thought about Airbnb-type accommodation, but only about one in seven (14%) have no concerns about the model.

The overall proportion of holidaymakers ruling out an Airbnb-type stay (74%) is little different from the rate among all respondents (71%), with the survey of 1,200-plus adults finding45% had never thought of Airbnb and 26% would not consider it or have concerns. The higher rate of travellers ruling out this type of accommodation suggests the peer‑to-peer sector has work to do to convince travellers it takes health and safety as seriously as hotels and tour operators.

Overall, only one in 10 respondents (11%) said they would have no concerns about staying in Airbnb-style accommodation.

The proportion of those ruling out or concerned about Airbnb was higher among younger adults (32% among 16-24s and 39% among 25-34s), although so was the proportion with “no concerns”.

Older adults were more likely never to have considered Airbnb (52% of 45 to 54-year-olds and 60% of 55s and over).

Those with young families were twice as likely to have considered Airbnb as adults without children, but two out of five (41%) had concerns or ruled out such accommodation, three times the rate of young families with no concerns. Adults from more affluent households were hardly more likely to have considered Airbnb than those with less money.

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