The cities worldwide that have hosted a major sporting event believe it to be a burden and a benefit. This is because they create a substantial economic windfall. Birmingham Commonwealth games 2022 allows the hosting of the commonwealth games this year in the city of Birmingham.
However, the amount of financial windfall enjoyed by the local citizens is still certain. Also, the massive influx of international and national tourists coming to see the games mandates the city to provide enough accommodation facilities.
Airbnb has helped many cities host sports events by easing the burden on their infrastructure through their platform. It has also allowed residents to benefit economically from the influx of travelers by opening their homes to them directly. The potential and benefits of Airbnb as a platform are most realized during these global sporting events. This is when Airbnb bridges the gap between local citizens and foreign travelers. It allows both parties to benefit from each other and release the infrastructural strain on the government.
Airbnb will become the official hosting provider for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. The partnership encourages local citizens to directly participate in the economic benefits of this event and host visitors to the competition.
“We are proud to welcome Airbnb to our sponsor family as the official hosting provider for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games,” said Birmingham 2022 chief financial officer David Grady.
What Would Birmingham CommonWealth Games 2022 Mean for Vacation Rentals in the United Kingdom?
According to the research, the U.KThe number of active listings on Airbnb increased from 168,000 in 2017 to 223,000 in 2018. This is a 33% leap and a significant market share of the growing vacation rental market in the U.K.
The report further showed that 2.7% of the U.K.’s 1.5-million landlord population have already switched from long-term rental properties in the private rented sector to short-term rentals, equating to 50,000 homes unavailable to long-term tenants.
The data implies that the already strained housing supply in the country will be further stretched. More people are turning their houses into vacation rentals.
According to the U.K. government housing index, from April 2021 to April 2022, rental prices for the U.K., excluding London, increased by 3.4%.
In London, a 90-day rule was imposed on house rentals that did not allow a property to be rented out on Airbnb, or any similar service, for more than three months a year without planning permission. Airbnb has been the key player in this ongoing housing crisis and has been openly criticized for causing it.
The platform expects more minor criticism since it provides a side income to people who are deeply worried about making ends meet. The Office for National Statistics states that 87 percent of Britishers asserted that their cost of living had increased in April.
This is mainly caused by inflation, stagnant wages, fuel price increases, and rising energy bills. Parallelly, 43 percent of Britishers said they would struggle to pay their rising energy bills.
Amidst these rising living costs, Airbnb has introduced a promising means of gaining extra income with this partnership. Sporting events have commonly been a stimulating force that prompts the growth of home-sharing in local communities. They also bring new economic opportunities for people who are willing to open their houses to travelers, and these opportunities last beyond the events themselves.
“This partnership gives locals every opportunity to earn extra income this summer while giving visitors a genuine chance to experience the Games amongst the wonderful people of the region,” said David Grady.
The company also asserted that this partnership is part of its “Healthy Tourism Commitment” for “sustainable recovery” of the vacation rental industry in the United Kingdom.
An example of what this partnership could do for the local economy is the economic opportunities experienced by Russians during the 2018 soccer games in the country. At the time, Airbnb hosts hosted close to 300,000 guests at listings across the country during the duration of the event. They earned over $40 million collectively.
Travelers from over 150 countries (and nearly 8,000 different cities) stayed at Airbnb listings during this time. All of the top twenty biggest nights in Russia in Airbnb history occurred during this time.
What Would Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022 Mean for the Travelers?
“Birmingham 2022 is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the West Midlands, and what better way for visitors to experience the region than sharing the home of a local,” stated Amanda Cupples, general manager for Northern Europe at Airbnb.
Travelers from around the world will be visiting the city, and staying at an Airbnb will give them the following benefits.
1. A Local Experience
Guests want an authentic local experience when they choose to go for Airbnbs. They are looking for insider knowledge about the city and see the city from the eyes of a local citizen.
2. Privacy on a Backpackers’ Budget
Airbnbs are a cheaper alternative to hotels (excluding the luxury Airbnbs). Budget travelers looking for reasonable accommodation on a backpacker’s budget but want some privacy to choose Airbnbs. Airbnbs give them the option to rent a room, couch, tent, or an entire apartment within the budget range they select using Airbnb filters.
3. Airbnb is Safe
It is understandable why some people are apprehensive about renting an Airbnb from a stranger. However, Airbnb has procedures in place that limits safety concerns and risk. The recent Airbnb Safety Update has made it safer for travelers to rent using the platform. These include:
- Hosts must verify themselves by providing identification to Airbnb, giving credibility to them.
- The Reviews on the Airbnb listings allow the guests to see what they can expect from their stay at a particular listing with a particular host.
- Messaging the host allows the guests to know their host before deciding to live with them.
- Airbnb has a 24/7 hotline which serves as a safety net in case things go wrong.
- All payments go through a safe payment system of Airbnb, so the chances of stolen personal information are minimal. Also, the payment is not released to the host until 24 hours after the guest’s arrival.
- Verified listing photos show that an Airbnb photographer has personally visited the listing and taken shots of the rental space giving them credibility and assuring the guests that there won’t be any surprises.
4. Rental Diversity
No two Airbnb listings look the same. Also, Airbnb gives a plethora of options to travelers to choose from. They can easily browse the platform and select an accommodation that goes well with their vibe.
5. Home Away From Home
Many travelers avoid a hotel’s synthetic vibe and choose to stay at cozy and homely places. With most Airbnb rentals, guests will get the cozy and homey feeling lacking in hotels and sometimes feel right at home.
6. Kitchen for Cooking
They will have their own kitchen to cook their food. Many travelers prefer to cook their own meals and not worry about cross-contamination in hostel or hotel kitchens. The huge influx of travelers at a time when Covid is still roaming the streets can put a lot of people on edge. Travels may prefer to be assured of their own space where they can control the hygiene and meal preparation.
7. Great for Group Travelers
Travelers can rent an entire apartment on Airbnb if they are traveling in small groups. That way, everyone can stay together and get the privacy they need for a lower price than staying in multiple hotel rooms.
How can Airbnb hosts prepare their rentals for international travelers?
Now that you know that you will be experiencing a huge demand spike during the coming months, you should upgrade your Airbnb or be mindful of their hosting tips to help you deal with international travelers and get more Airbnb reviews.
As a new host, you should look at Airbnb hosting tips to help get you started.
1. Translating your listing description into commonly spoken languages
Your Airbnb listing in a guest’s language can help them feel more welcomed. You can start with more commonly spoken languages and then gradually move on to add more.
If you want to find common languages that guests in your area speak, you can check with your local Host Club or tourism organization. Then you can use a free online translation tool for your listing description or hire a freelance translator.
2. Overcoming Language Barrier
Eye contact, sign language, and attempts at finding common ground can foster understanding. Some hosts practice several languages to chat with their guests, but there are many clever ways to connect, even if you’re not multilingual.
Welcome your guests with a smile, and half your job is done. Spell correctly and use simple English in messages. It’s hard sometimes. No “c u soon” or “thx.” We don’t know how Google translates misspelled words. Also, try not to assume cultural norms and practices. One fun thing that you can do is make icons for house instructions instead of using words.
3. Communicating before the trip
The pre-trip communication gives many opportunities to improve the Host-guest experience and prevent misunderstandings. It also allows you to understand why guests are coming, what they want to do, and how you can help them. This will also allow you to prepare their rental according to their trip goals and give them a more personalized experience.
4. Creating a smooth check-in
Visiting a new country can make some travelers feel anxious. To help guests feel more at ease, you can share practical information about train passes, schedules, and prices.
You should also try to greet guests in person or pick them up from their station or airport if it is feasible. It means a lot to your guests if you can personally meet them when they stay at your house for the coming days.
5. Providing warm hospitality
A welcoming host has this innate quality that they can be easily trusted. You can come across as a trustable person to your guests when you provide them with a safe environment right from the moment they enter your house.
You should also strive to provide them a sense of security outside your home by providing them with customized recommendations, emergency contact numbers, and some guidelines about your city.
6. Sharing your culture
You can offer your guests the opportunity to immerse in your local culture. Make an effort to help your guests understand your community, the cultural differences, and the social norms of your country. You can also add decor items in your house that reflects your culture and leave flyers for local restaurants that serve your traditional cuisines. Go the extra mile and help them figure out their itinerary in a manner that they get to truly see your city and its local culture.
How can hosts optimize their bookings?
1. Set an appropriate Airbnb Pricing Strategy
If you don’t adopt a dynamic pricing solution to price your vacation rental appropriately, you will leave money on the table. There will be a huge inflow of demand during the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022.
You can use PriceLabs Dynamic Pricing Solutions to identify the market demand. Ensure not to get a booking at a low price too early by setting the right customizations.
PriceLabs uses a data-driven automated pricing system. It suggests nightly prices after assessing the market demand and supply. You can use PriceLabs Neighborhood data to make a more informed pricing strategy.
2. Set the appropriate minimum stay restrictions
You are more likely to get a booking for the entire duration of the Birmingham commonwealth games 2022. A sector coming to watch the games will not book for a day or two. Also, most people traveling from other countries choose to get their reservations done before arrival.
If you don’t set your minimum stay restrictions for the duration of the games, you might get a short booking. You might fail to get a booking again during the games when your nightly price is higher. Most travelers would have already booked their accommodation, and there won’t be new ones seeking accommodation.
3. Update cancellations policies
The pandemic taught me that nothing is set in stone. Even the most concrete-looking plans can change in the blink of an eye. People are aware of this and want to play safe with their bookings. Most travelers look for comparatively flexible Airbnb cancellation policies.
You can analyze what cancellation policies are receiving the maximum bookings in your vicinity in PriceLabs Market Dashboard.
The ideal cancellation policy would allow the guests to make cancellations up to 48 hours before check-in for a reasonable fee. You can increase the amount of the fee according to the proximity of the cancellation with the check-in time.
4. Set a fee for Early Check-in and Late Check-out requests
You should know how to deal with early check-in requests to get the best out of this demand spike. Travelers usually book early flights to make the most of their day. They just want to check into their rooms or get a place to keep their luggage and freshen up before starting their day. You may also receive a lot of late check-out requests for similar reasons.
You can optimize your revenue by offering an early check-in or late check-out for an extra fee, depending on the number of extra hours they want to stay. Most travelers will be willing to pay this fee to be able to use their room and not carry their luggage around.