The Airbnb community contributed US$61 million (INR 4 billion), and supported more than 7,500 local jobs in Goa in 2019, according to Oxford Economics’ The Economic Impact of Airbnb in India report released today.
The landmark report explored the total economic impact of Airbnb in India between 2015 and 2019, and found that Airbnb was a significant contributor to Goa’s tourism economy. In the past five years, Airbnb guests spent a total of USD $155.8 million (INR 11 billion) in Goa, of which USD $64.2 million was spent in 2019 alone.
Importantly, the report also highlighted how Airbnb’s community-led approach is spreading the benefits of tourism to micro-entrepreneurs and small businesses. INR 6,500 out of every INR 10,000 spent outside accommodation by Airbnb guests in India went on shopping or food, supporting these local businesses.
Subho Ray, President, Internet and Mobile Association of India, said: “For an industry that contributes nearly 10 percent to India’s GDP, a community-based approach at the grassroots level is required to kick-start tourism in the aftermath of the health pandemic. If communities are empowered through models like homestays, I think tourism will spring back to life. Homestays are becoming a critical means to provide either direct, supplementary or alternative income to local communities, support local businesses, alleviate poverty, attract eco-tourists, showcase local cultural and natural heritage. It is heartening to note that companies like Airbnb are doing incredible work in this segment towards empowering the local community and boosting cultural tourism in India.”
James Lambert, Oxford Economics’ Director of Economic Consulting in Asia, said: “Airbnb is well-placed to play an important role in bringing tourists, and their spending, back to destination economies, and in supporting the earlier recovery of domestic travel by helping households, particularly those who seek to substitute an international trip with a domestic one, discover new areas in their own country to visit.”
Amanpreet Bajaj, General Manager – Airbnb India, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, said: “Goa is a highly sought-after tourism destination, and is one of the most popular destinations in India. We are conscious, as close partners to Goan communities, that tourism in the state must be high-quality and sustainable. This report reaffirms how local families, local businesses and local communities in Goa benefit most from Airbnb guests and their spending. The tourism industry is the mainstay of Goa’s economy and creates micro entrepreneurship opportunities for locals in the state, while employing thousands of locals in tourism related businesses. It is very important to us that as we round the curve on the pandemic, we begin to address the impact on communities. Going forward, we want to work even closer with the Goa Government to support high-quality, sustainable tourism in the state.”
Santosh and Gitane D Souza, Airbnb superhosts in Goa, said, “We have always been excited about meeting new people and making lifelong friends through hosting on Airbnb. The last few months have been challenging for everyone, but we are seeing a silver lining. As travel returns to a new normal, we have seen positive responses from travellers who are in search of local experiences. The continued support we received from Airbnb over the last few months has been overwhelming. They have been partners in the truest sense, helping us adapt to the new world of travel, while continuing to provide the enhanced services to our guests.”
The report also found that Airbnb in 2019 contributed more than USD $320 million (INR 22 billion) to India’s Gross Domestic Product and supported close to 50,000 local jobs in the country. Between 2015 and 2019, Airbnb guests spent a total of USD $610 million (INR 45 billion) in India.