KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday November 18, 2016 – On the heels of Airbnb signing its first Caribbean partnership with the Aruba Tourism Authority, Jamaica’s Tourism Ministry is set to sign a major agreement with the online short-term rental business.
Minister Edmund Bartlett made the disclosure after a meeting with Airbnb officials this week. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) is to be drafted and signed at a later date.
The market for Airbnb in Jamaica is rapidly growing and is extremely lucrative, according to Airbnb’s executive with responsibility for public policy in Latin America and the Caribbean, Shawn Sullivan.
The site currently accounts for 2,300 active hosts and 4,000 active listings in the past year from Jamaica.
“Generally in the Caribbean, people will rent their entire homes. Here in Jamaica, we are seeing a mixture between private homes versus a private space in someone’s home. We were responsible for bringing in roughly 32,000 tourists within the past year and we believe that this collaboration will allow this to grow exponentially,” Sullivan explained.
Minister Bartlett is optimistic about the potential impact the deal will have on community tourism and is eager to finalize the MOU to concretize the partnership with Airbnb.
“We are very happy to be partnering with Airbnb and know that it will be mutually beneficial to both entities involved. Once drafted, I know that the agreement will take into account our goal of destination assurance, which ensures our credibility in the marketplace,” Bartlett said. “It will also allow us to utilize analytics across their social platforms. This will be a great tool for us to build a better collective resource management platform for our destination.”
Airbnb is an online community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book accommodations around the world online. It connects people to unique travel experiences, at any price point, in more than 34,000 cities and 191 countries.