Global City Leaders: Airbnb Supports Big Events

Airbnb helps cities manage some of the biggest events on earth. Whether the Olympic Games in London, World Cup in Brazil or Expo 2015 in Milan, Airbnb spreads the economic benefits of global mega-events to regular people and gives cities the flexibility to host unprecedented visitor numbers without a single brick being laid.

Today, mayors and city leaders from across the globe gathered in London to discuss how the Airbnb community and sharing economy platforms have become valued partners to modern cities managing big events. They agreed that cities need a new, sustainable approach to managing big events – one that makes efficient use of existing infrastructures, includes authentic local experiences and leaves a legacy of civic pride for local residents.

Here’s what they had to say:

Rob Adams, Director City Design & Projects, City of Melbourne:
“For cities to build specific infrastructure for big events worries me. The right thing to do is to look at your own, existing infrastructure and ask: ‘How do we get more out of this?’ That’s the Airbnb principle.”

Matteo Lepore, Deputy Mayor, City of Bologna:
“How do we be flexible and host people from other cities? That’s our issue. We need to promote our city and to be ready with infrastructure to host people who want an authentic Italian experience.”

Hila Oren, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Tel Aviv Global and Tourism:
“Pride is something that can boost a city for a decade.”

Today’s roundtable event was held at the third CityLab conference – Urban Solutions to Global Challenges. It confirmed what we hear from progressive cities around the world; big events are best when everyone benefits. They have the power to boost a city for a generation.

Today, we are also highlighting new figures that show how the Airbnb community is supporting the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, where Airbnb is the official alternative accommodation provider.

With just under one year to go until the opening ceremony…

  • Almost 7,500 guests from more than 50 countries have already booked to stay with an Airbnb host at the Olympic Games in Rio.
  • Guests have booked to stay in 36 neighbourhoods in Rio, spreading economic benefits beyond the tourist hotspots to new families, communities and local businesses.
  • The average stay with an Airbnb host during the Olympic Games is more than eight days.

We are proud to have built a reputation as a trusted partner for cities managing global mega-events. When the eyes of the world are focused on a city, our community steps-up and provides guests with unique and local travel experiences. We want to work together with more cities to democratise the benefits of big events and extend their benefits to regular people who share their homes to help make ends meet.