COVID-19: Leveraging Airbnb out | France, Singapore look inward

Some cities limiting Airbnb growth

Airbnb, which earlier this year trimmed its workforce by 25% due to the pandemic, has a challenge on another front: Some destinations are using the pandemic to reengineer their tourism industries, pushing out Airbnb in favor of affordable housing for locals. Cities in Portugal, for instance, offered Airbnb hosts a fair rate to transform their vacation rental properties into housing for essential workers.

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France’s ‘Marshall Plan’ for tourism

France had set a target of 100 million international tourists in 2020, a goal obliterated by the coronavirus. Now, survival is the theme as the French government announced a “Marshall Plan” for the country’s tourism, supported by €18 billion ($20.3 billion). The package includes direct financial support, loan guarantees, extended unemployment benefits and tax benefits to keep tourism companies afloat, along with some incentives for visitors to spend money.

Read more at Forbes 

Singapore looks inward for tourism dollars

With borders closed to foreigners, hotels and tourist attractions in Singapore are counting on staycationers to plug the gap in an industry that brought in almost US$20 billion in revenue last year. It’s a tall order. “Unless we have a return to international business, the hotel industry is going to be decimated as up to 90% of our bookings come from international travelers,” said Michael Issenberg, chief executive officer of Accor SA’s Asia Pacific unit, the largest hotel operator in Singapore.

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