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LI Airbnb hosts earned $58.2 million in 2019, up nearly 23% from 2018

Independence Day day crowds gather at Jones Beach

Independence Day day crowds gather at Jones Beach State Park last year. The number of Airbnb guest arrivals on Long Island increased 25.5% to 174,700 compared to 2018, with almost half of 2019's total revenue earned by hosts -- $25.8 million -- coming in the five peak travel weekends, including July Fourth. Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara

Airbnb Inc. hosts on Long Island posted a 22.8% revenue increase in 2019 to $58.2 million, according to data released Tuesday by the home-sharing service.

The number of guest arrivals on Long Island increased 25.5% to 174,700 compared to 2018, the San Francisco-based company reported.

Almost half of 2019's total revenue earned by hosts — $25.8 million — came in the five peak travel weekends of 2019, including July Fourth and Labor Day, the company said.

The data release comes as Airbnb prepares for an expected multibillion-dollar initial public offering this year.

In September, the 12-year-old company confirmed that it is planning the long-rumored public stock offering, but no public IPO filing has yet surfaced on the Securities and Exchange Commission website.

Last week, Airbnb issued an open letter in which it pledged to make safety a priority and serve not just investors, but all its stakeholders, including guests, hosts, communities and employees. 

"We see the making of a company that serves all stakeholders as a design challenge," the letter said. "We are early in our work. And we are far from being a perfect company ..."

After five people were killed in a Halloween shooting at an Airbnb rental property in Orinda, California, the company said it would roll out a hotline and tighten security procedures.

In 2019, 32,000 guest arrivals in Nassau County generated $6.9 million in host income, while 142,700 arrivals in Suffolk generated $51.3 million.

Increases in host income and guest arrivals on Long Island come despite efforts by several Long Island municipalities to curb short-term rentals by Airbnb and similar services.

In November, Babylon Village trustees banned rentals of less than 30 nights. The Village of New Hyde Park and Great Neck Estates passed similar curbs in 2017 and 2016. In July 2017, the Town of Hempstead voted to ban short-term rentals in its unincorporated areas.

The top five 2019 weekends were: July 5-7 with 7,300 guest arrivals and $5.3 million in host income; Aug. 16-18 with 7,200 guest arrivals and $5.3 million; Aug.. 30 to Sept. 1, 7,200 and $5.1 million; Aug. 9-11, 7,000 and $5 million; and Aug. 23-25, 6,900 and $5.1 million.

"We hope that these insights will help local New Yorkers who are looking to open up their home as a short-term rental in identifying some of the best times of the year to do so," Josh Meltzer, Airbnb's head of Northeast public policy, said in a statement.

Since its founding in 2008, Airbnb hosts in 100,000 municipalities worldwide have earned more than $65 billion, the company said.

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