Project explores impact of Airbnb on Canterbury tourism

27 October 2018

The University of Canterbury (UC), ChristchurchNZ, and Tourism Industry Aotearoa are working together on the project, which will help understand the economic, social and environmental impact of Airbnb in Canterbury. It will also look at the financial performance of Airbnb compared to the formal accommodation sector and how Canterbury rates against other regions.

  • Airbnb

The impact Airbnb has had on Canterbury tourism is being researched following a successful funding bid.

 The research follows up on insights released by ChristchurchNZ late last year showing the total number of Airbnb accommodation units in the city had almost doubled in the 12 months to September 2017, rising from 1158 to 2035.

ChristchurchNZ figures show there has been a rapid rise of Airbnb in the city over the last two years, but this appears to have stabilised at 21 percent in recent months.

University of Canterbury Associate Professor Girish Prayag and Associate Professor Lucie Ozanne said the research would allow the regional tourism industry to devise and implement a clear response strategy to peer to peer accommodation.

“The findings will be meaningful for policymakers at the regional and local council levels but also can serve as “learning” cases for other regions in New Zealand.”

ChristchurchNZ Senior Economist Peter Fieger said the research is expected to give further insights into the booming peer to peer accommodation sector.

“It is clear from a tourism industry perspective, there is a need to better understand the phenomenon of peer to peer accommodation, and in particular Airbnb, as the landscape of the formal accommodation market changes in the South Island.”

The research, which is being funded by the University of Canterbury, is expected to be completed in December 2018. It will be available to anyone with an interest in the peer to peer accommodation sector.

 To sign up as part of the focus group please fill in the ‌Information sheet and consent form and for more information please contact:

Rosemarie Martin


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