Olympic city Rio is world’s priciest Airbnb city.
It’s not just Rio de Janeiro hotel prices that are soaring ahead of the Olympics. The Summer Games have turned Rio into the world’s priciest destination on lodging platform Airbnb.
In a new Bloomberg index released on Wednesday, Rio de Janeiro lodging on Airbnb cost $206 per day on average, exceeding that of No. 2 Miami and No. 3 San Francisco.
A stay in a private Rio dwelling was more than twice as costly as Paris, according to the index of global cities with at least 100 local listings. It took average prices for two blocks of time that are six months apart and include part of the Olympics – August 1 to 10 – as well as February 1 to 10, 2017. Data were collected between May 1 to May 10, 2016.
Rio has a famously limited hotel stock, and many hospitality companies have scurried to open new hotels just to meet demand from Olympic delegations, leaving limited options for the hundreds of thousands of foreign tourists expected to travel for the Games. Alternative lodging providers, Airbnb chief among them, have tried to scoop up the rest of the Olympic travellers.
At $242 a night, Rio is the world’s seventh most expensive place to stay in a hotel, according to Bloomberg World Hotel Index, which was updated on Wednesday and is based on Expedia data for double-occupancy rooms for two adults, regardless of star rating. When compared to the hotel index for the same period, the Airbnb price translates into just a 15% discount. Across all Latin American cities tracked by Bloomberg, the average discount is 42%, with Airbnb bookings in Mexico City beating hotels by 75%.
Leonardo Tristao, head of Airbnb in Brazil, said in an interview Monday that the majority of athletes’ families are staying with Airbnb, in addition to other tourists.
“There’s a lot of demand, but there’s also a lot of supply,” Tristao said. “That helps guarantee that there’s a listing for any budget.”
Other notably expensive Airbnb destinations in the index include Kuwait City and Dubai, while Mexico City; Bangalore, India; and Jakarta were the cheapest, with average rates of $32, $37 and $38, respectively.
Fewer than 1/10th of cities surveyed had rates that exceeded 2.5 times their countries’ daily per capita gross domestic product. Noted exceptions include Lagos, Nigeria, at 8.53 times; Accra, Ghana, at 6.08 times; and Rio at 5.02 times.