Sports events are fast-becoming a popular reason to travel. Locally, sports experiences that are trendy in Malaysia include standup paddling, flyboarding, rock climbing and cycling. Overseas, it’s cycling, hiking and surfing.
“For cities around the world, hosting a major sporting event can be both a burden and a benefit. While such events can benefit a city economically, there is the question of how much of that goes back to the local citizens.
“And the massive influx of tourists can also place a strain on a city’s infrastructure in places where there is limited accommodation,” Airbnb general manager for South-East Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, Mike Orgill, said in a statement.
“Over the past decade, Airbnb has helped to ease that infrastructural burden on such cities and enabled local residents to reap the economic benefits from these events,” he added.
For the World Cup (in 2014 and 2018), the estimated guest arrivals at listed accommodations in the host cities during the event was 391,000 and the estimated earnings by the hosts was over US$79mil (RM328mil).
Meanwhile, the Olympics (from 2012 to 2018) saw estimated guest arrivals of 112,000 at the listed accommodations in host cities during the event and the estimated earnings of the hosts was over US$37mil (RM153mil).
As for future projections, the Rugby World Cup (taking place in several cities in Japan) happening later this year is expected to bring in 300,000 estimated projected guest arrivals at listed accommodations in the host cities during the event and estimated projected earnings of over US$43mil (RM179mil) for the hosts.
Wimbledon (in London) is also expected to bring in 185,000 estimated projected guest arrivals at listed accommodations in host cities during the event and the estimated projected earnings of over US$3mil (RM12mil) for the hosts.
Every week, Airbnb hosts welcome sports fans into their homes as they attend events. This pattern has played out at major sporting events around the world throughout the company’s history.
“Sports are a universal language, and sporting events have always been a pillar of global travel. They bring together people from different countries for week-long festivities, adventures or one-day activities,” Orgill shared. “Such events are one of the things that has helped foster the growth of home sharing in local communities,” he said.