PHOTO: Rawai, had Airbnb growth of 92 over the past year
- Off-the-beaten-track destinations in Thailand grew by 53% year-on-year, with some areas like Rawai in Phuket growing by more than 92% year-on-year.
- Airbnb hosts outside of big cities and major tourist destinations in APAC earned nearly US$1bn through the Airbnb platform in 2018.
- 12 million guests checked into Airbnb listings in these destinations in 2018, growing 70% year-over-year.
New data released today highlights how the Airbnb community is helping grow tourism in off-the-beaten-track destinations across Thailand and the Asia Pacific, and helping spread the benefits of tourism beyond big cities and major tourism hotspots.
Similar to other countries in the Asia Pacific, the Airbnb community is growing rapidly in off-the-beaten track destinations in Thailand. This growth is powered by travellers increasingly seeking more local, unique and authentic experiences. In 2018, the number of Airbnb guest arrivals visiting off-the-beaten path destinations in Thailand grew by 53% year-on-year and some areas with the fastest growth included:
1. Rawai – 92%
2. Chiang Rai – 90%
3. Hat Yai – 214%
4. Saladan – 71%
By helping spread tourism across Thailand, Airbnb is bringing the economic benefits of tourism to local communities that haven’t shared in these benefits in the past. With up to 97 percent of the listing price going directly to Airbnb hospitality entrepreneurs, and almost 50 percent of guests’ spending occurring within the neighborhoods where they stay, the financial benefits of tourism can be significant for travel destinations.
Airbnb’s Head of Public Policy Southeast Asia Mich Goh said the data reinforced how Airbnb was helping grow tourism right across Thailand.
“Just as important as growing tourism is making sure that the benefits of tourism are dispersed beyond big cities and major tourism destinations. This new data shows that Airbnb is not only growing local tourism – but spreading this growth all across Thailand.
“With Airbnb, more people and places share in the enormous benefits of tourism. More Airbnb guests going off the beaten track means more income and jobs in local communities.”
The data also revealed more hospitality entrepreneurs in off-the-beaten-track destinations – home sharers, and small, independent, and boutique hotel owners – are turning to the Airbnb platform as a way to promote their unique listings to travellers from Thailand and the world. In 2018, some of the areas with the highest year-on-year growth in active listings in Thailand included:
1. Nakhon Sawan – 167%
2. Trang – 84%
3. Hat Yai – 65%
4. Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya – 66%
5. Chumphon – 61%
Airbnb also shared new data this week at Airbnb’s first ‘New Destinations Summit’ in Igualada (Barcelona, Spain), highlighting the Airbnb community model’s positive impact on communities in Europe with no, or few, hotels.
Around half of municipalities in Catalonia, for example, have no hotels or other traditional accommodation options. But in almost 120 communities with no hotels in Catalonia, travel on Airbnb platform has helped boost the economy by €1.5 million.
Boat Pattana’s Cherng Talay villa project reports strong pre-sales
Thai developer Boon Yongsakul’s latest development Shambala Grand Villa in Cherng Talay is experiencing strong pre-launch sales. With 22 available units, the Boat Pattana group has already reserved 17 units.
The landed properties feature two bedroom pool villas with land plots ranging from 300 to 600 square metres. Property management is through an affiliated company and buyers are offered a 6% guaranteed return on their investment – a fairly standard inducement in modern Thai new property sales.
Pricing for a fully furnished units starts at 16.9 million baht. Freehold and leasehold options are available.
Cherng Talay has become the latest ‘next big thing’ in Phuket property with the new Blue Tree Phuket waterpark opening sometime mid-year, Central’s new concept retail development called Central Porto de Phuket and countless new condo and inland hotel developments.
Boat Pattana’s other developments include the nearby Cherng Talay’s Boat Avenue. For more details email firstname.lastname@example.org
Chinese owners using condo investments as a ‘hotel’
PHOTO: Thai Rath
Residents in condos around the country are getting sick of the parade of short-stay travellers using their condo rooms as defacto hotel rooms, travellers renting out their rooms from Chinese owners who run their investments as quasi hotel rooms.
Thai Rath reports that “Condo C Ekkamai” (Sukhumvit Soi 63) tenants are at the end of their tether. They claim Chinese owners are renting their rooms to their compatriots and running their mini-businesses as quasi hotels.
Many of the rentals were daily, a situation that remains illegal under Thai law.
“At Songkran the condo resembled Beijing,” said one of the complainants.
“The owners had set up check-in and check-out facilities and baggage storage. There was also a team of maids on hand to do the cleaning in between guests.”
The ongoing problem had been the subject of many complaints to the condo’s body corporate who claim they are powerless to stop it (which is incorrect).
Legally, only rentals of more than 30 days are allowed without having the appropriate business and hotel licences. ‘Room sharing’, a situation used by the Airbnb business model for example, is a different matter and skates along a grey line in current Thai laws.
SOURCE: Thai Rath
“Condo C Ekkamai” (Sukhumvit Soi 63)
A drop in demand leaves Bangkok with a glut of completed new condos
A parliament of owls? A murder of crows? A flock of geese?
But what’s the collective noun for a lot of available new condo developments in Bangkok?
A glut of Condos?
As Thailand’s economy is hit by the double whammy of fallout from US-China trade wars and lingering political instability, stricter mortgage-lending rules are also kicking in creating a buyer’s market in the capital.
Some basic statistics… 65,000 new apartments became available last year. That’s 11% more than 2017 and the most since 2009. But a Knight Frank reports indicates that demand is down and asking prices have decreased 6% year-on-year. Rental prices have also softened as recent investors remain keen to find tenants.
Aliwassa Pathnadabutr, a managing director of CBRE Group in Thailand, says that it’s a great time to get into the BKK market with prices down a bit and the selection better than ever.
“The overall condominium market will be slower this year but there are still opportunities in some locations with the right product at the right price. We believe the market is entering an equilibrium stage where prices will be adjusted to a more realistic level.”
Revised mortgage-lending rules that came into effect from April 1 are also dampening enthusiasm for property because lenders will now restrict the amount of money some buyers can borrow.
Meanwhile Brennan Campbell from FazWaz.com says the biggest developers are wanting to cash in their stock so they move on to the next projects.
“Some of the country’s largest developers are holding a huge inventory of completed or soon-to-be completed stock where they have seen demand soften through the first two quarters of 2019. The motivation to sell these units is growing as this capital is required to fund future projects. The result? A supply of incredible units in some of the best areas of Bangkok where buyers can be more creative in their negotiation strategies in order to secure the best overall value.”
Part of the softening in sales may also be linked to a drop in Chinese visitors to the capital. Whilst not a huge drop it is measurable considering that Chinese investors have historically been the principal foreign property buyers in Thailand. The lack of Chinese visitors is mostly a domestic problem with China’s economy softening as the US-China trade war bites.
CBRE reported recently that Thailand’s real estate market had a high reliance on foreigners.
“Most of the recent foreign buyers are investors and CBRE doubts they will live in the units they have bought. Foreign sales are highly sensitive to economic conditions of the buyer’s home country.”
Sopon Pornchokchai, president of the Agency for Real Estate Affairs, reports that a total of 454,814 residential units across the country were unsold in 2018.
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