The eco brief. Airbnb hardly knows the crisis


The Airbnb logo at a trade fair in Tokyo (Japan). Illustrative photo.
The Airbnb logo at a trade show in Tokyo (Japan). Illustrative photo. (TOSHIFUMI KITAMURA / AFP)

Airbnb has seen its results drop by 20% in the fourth quarter of 2020 to 700 million euros, but it is better than what analysts expected, and it is a much smaller decline than those recorded by online travel agencies or large hotel networks, which are showing an average decline of 70 to 80%. This is reflected in the stock price: listed in New York since December, the Airbnb title has already tripled. The company is still not profitable, but it is attracting investors.

In the current context, the offer is better suited than that of hotels. No more big trips around the world. Customers are looking for affordable, accessible places to be closer to their families or to enjoy short stays at a lower cost. Airbnb derives most of its revenue from popular local tourism where hotels do 60 to 70% of their business with business travel which has declined with the pandemic.

More than tourism, the managers of the rental platform take a very close look at everything related to new consumption and work habits. According to them, teleworking will be part of the long term with increasingly flexible and nomadic organizations. These underlying trends are already observed in all developed countries. And then faced with this clientele made up of what are now called “digital nomads”, Airbnb believes that the crisis will help attract new customers: guests eager to find new sources of income by renting out their property. What was already a reality should settle down as a long-term norm.


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