Sustainable Tourism: The Beginner’s Guide to Airbnb Rentals
“Whenever I see girls and boys
Selling lanterns on the streets
I remember the Child
In the manger as He sleeps…”
While strolling around your neighboring marketplace looking for something to eat, you hear this medley that sounds too familiar for your liking. An epiphany dawned on you that the changing of winds has nothing to do with your revealing clothes but the season is shifting once again. When the Church bells started ringing, vibrant lights began twinkling, films like Love Actually replaced throat-slashing ones, the town has been painted red with a gold accent and Jose Mari Chan has infiltrated malls with his famous carols; one thing is for sure – Christmas is fast approaching and you are a few weeks closer to your most awaited holiday getaway. Ironically, planning your dream vacation can be a taxing assignment especially when your itinerary is jam-packed and hotel accommodations are fully booked. Thank the heavens for Airbnb rentals – an innovative online platform where booking settlements around the world, be it for tourism or for business trip, is just a click away.
What sets this online home-renting company apart from the clinical hotel room ambiance is the atmosphere of belongingness and intimacy from the personalized interior styles designed by home owners themselves. A vacation getaway doesn’t necessarily mean detaching oneself from one’s residence, Airbnb rentals offer not just a place to crash but a dwelling where you can feel at home even when you are miles away from your actual abode.
Booking Airbnb rentals also offers a different kind of experience from hotel accommodations. Aside from the typical hotel bill that costs you a thousand bucks away from bankruptcy, it immerses you in an adventure that feels like as if you are living a new found life far from what you have back home. That sense of human contact and cultural immersion through camouflaging as one of the locals can never be absorbed if you are stuck in the rut of your stark hotel room. Indeed, there is the risk of getting swindled by fraudulent hosts but that’s what traveling is all about – it creates stories that are either cool enough to be shared in a night out with your clique or embarrassing enough to take with you to your grave.
Your short but meaningful stay in Airbnb rentals can be more than just a travel escapade, it may also inspire you to steal the interior style of your Airbnb for that renovation you have been planning on for your newly bought condominium next year. Even perhaps, you may also venture on an Airbnb business and be a host yourself. There is no denying that Airbnb rentals have contributed a lot not only in the economic sector but also in linking humans around the world and spreading the culture of one another.
WHY AIRBNB RENTALS ARE THE FUTURE OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
This 10-year-old online hospitality service, which started with just two designers needing money to fund their rent and had an extra space to share, has now amounted to $30 billion with 4 million active listings across 191 countries, 650,000 hosts and has catered to 200 million guests since its launch.
One of the world’s largest economic sectors and also the industry that is directly affected by the growing number of Airbnb rentals is tourism and travel. According to the 2017 report from the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), this field has accumulated a total of P3.5 trillion to the Philippine economy accounting for 21 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). In the first half of 2018, Department of Tourism (DOT) recorded tourist arrivals from January to June to rose by 110.4% or 3.7 million as compared to the 3.3 million registered in the same period last year.
The surge of tourists has caused the leading real estate provider in the country Colliers International Philippines to encourage developers and operators to emphasize the cultural and historical aspects of old buildings that could be redeveloped into accommodation facilities so as to introduce to foreigners our country’s abundant history and culture.
The influx of international tourist arrivals has led to an uneven distribution of revenues throughout the country with urban areas and established businesses benefiting the most. To counter the ramifications of mass tourism, professionals and international organizations in the field have called for tourism models which will equally allocate these assets to all parts of the society while also preserving the natural resources and cultural treasures of the country.
These practices fall under the concept of Sustainable Tourism or as UNESCO defines it: “the tourism that respects both local people and the traveler, cultural heritage and the environment”. Whether you are an avid or an amateur traveler, it is considerate to keep in mind the essence of sustainable tourism so that your vacation can be both thrilling and at the same time beneficial to the people of the host country.
Here's how you can help the environment and contribute to society with Sustainable Interior Design.
GEOGRAPHIC DIVERSITY AND ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE
Contrary to belief that Airbnb encourages overcrowding and mass tourism concentration, two-thirds of Airbnb rentals are actually located outside of traditional tourist areas and urges geographic diversity and distribution of guest arrivals. Above anything, Airbnb rentals shift the economy to benefit the struggling locals from unprecedented and underserved areas charging as little as 3 percent fee to hosts supporting an inclusive and sustainable economic growth. Based on the 2200 cities analyzed, Airbnb has supported a total of 730,000 jobs globally and drove and astounding $US60 billion in output in these cities.
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND CULTURAL IMMERSION
Aside from the economic gains, Airbnb rentals also ushered in positive effects to resource efficiency and environmental protection since they enable the use of idle assets rather than necessitating the creation of new assets. Research suggests that home sharing consume less energy, less water and reduces wastes as opposed to booking hotels. Ultimately, there is nothing more cultural and genuine than living in the humble abode of a local hence, for those seeking authentic travel experiences, Airbnb rentals are great to lose oneself in the history, culture, diversity and heritage of the country allowing for social interactions and an improved sense of community to blossom.
Indeed, Airbnb rentals have revolutionized how and where people travel. Airbnb reckoned that if they can’t change the rules and compete with aristocratic hotels, they changed the game instead and harnessed what engrosses people these days – technology. Airbnb has channeled this strength as patterned to the World Tourism Organization’s theme this year “Innovation and Digital Transformation” which focuses on how the industry can utilize technology as a force for inclusion, empowerment and entrepreneurship.
Not only has Airbnb rentals connected a lot of people together from all walks of life, it has also proven that another person’s home can be another man’s place where he can create blissful memories immeasurable of any prized possession.
As anchored in the pillars of Airbnb’s mission of spreading a sustainable and healthy tourism, here are the ways on how they show their support to the goals set by The Wold Tourism Organization (UNTWO):
• Inclusive of typically underrepresented communities
• Responsive to the world’s environmental sustainability needs
• Built to deliver authentic experiences that are locally-based, benefitting communities rather than mass-tourism operators
• Considerate of not only local economies but also local cultures
• Designed to diversify the economic benefits of tourism
Did any of these Airbnb rentals inspire you to become a part of the sustainable tourism movement? Tokyo Grand Renovation (TGR) is more than willing to discuss your interior design cravings and assist you in renovating your place so you can list it on this emerging and innovative platform.
Conveniently located in the leading business district in Metro Manila, TGR’s headquarters is at 9110 La Campana St. cor. Trabajo St., Brgy. Olympia, Makati City, 1207.
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