Area Airbnb spots in Chautauqua County on the rise
With winter’s presence still lingering, thoughts of summer and vacations to exotic locales have been providing a reprieve from the cold and gray for many in Chautauqua County. Airbnb, the world’s leading community-driven hospitality company, recently announced that its Western New York host community earned approximately $12.3 million in total supplemental income, while welcoming approximately 140,100 guest arrivals to the region in 2018.
“Throughout 2018, the home sharing community has provided significant value to Western New York communities during big events, such as the summer tourism boom, college commencement season and Bills games,” said Jennifer Burner Barden of Risa Heller Communications in an email to the OBSERVER. “With Airbnb, local families have been able to tap into increased demand by opening up their home and making some extra income, while ensuring visiting guests will have access to affordable accommodations.”
In Chautauqua County, there are now approximately 220 hosts who share their homes via Airbnb, typically earning about $3,400 annually in supplemental income. “Hosts in Chautauqua made $1.285 million over the past year, up from more than $659,100 the previous year,” said Burner Barden. “There were approximately 9,500 guest arrivals in Chautauqua over the past year, up from approximately 4,900 the previous year.”
The total 2018 guest arrivals for Chautauqua County were 10,300, while total 2018 host income was $1.3 million. “The top five destination cities for guests in Chautauqua over the past year were Bemus Point, Jamestown, Westfield, Mayville and Dunkirk,” said Burner Barden. “The top four origin cities for guests to Chautauqua over the past year were Pittsburgh, Buffalo, New York City and Cleveland. (Among the) top wish-listed are Farmhouse in the Canadaway Woods in Cherry Creek and Arwen Farms LLC., Vineyard House in Ripley.”
All around Chautauqua county, be it urban or rural, there has been noted growth in the tourism sector.
“In the summer, some hotspots are Chautauqua Lake, parts of the Lake Erie shoreline, Sunset Bay, areas around Dunkirk and Westfield, bed and breakfasts,” said Andrew Nixon, executive director of the Chautauqua County Visitor’s Bureau. “Downtown Jamestown has come on stronger in the past few years.”
The National Comedy Center in Jamestown continues to be a huge draw for the county going into 2019. “There’s been so much media connection to the comedy center, it’s unprecedented really,” said Nixon of Jamestown’s tourism growth. “ILoveNY tourism center has come out. A number of articles have been written in major travel publications like Conde Nast, Travel & Leisure and USA Today.”
Agreements between counties and Airbnb continue to bolster revenue as well. “In addition to the new income going into the pockets of Western New York Airbnb hosts, counties across the region are generating new revenue through tax agreements that allow Airbnb to collect and remit local taxes on behalf of its hosts,” said Airbnb Northeast Press Secretary Liz DeBold Fusco. “Airbnb has reached such agreements with two counties in the Finger Lakes — Allegany County and Cattaraugus County — and has remitted more than $2.7 million in local taxes statewide.”
Throughout Western New York, the annual supplemental income totals were in the thousands. In Allegany county, there are now approximately 40 hosts who share their homes via Airbnb, typically earning about $2.600 annually in supplemental income. The total 2018 guest arrivals for Allegany county were 2,100, while total 2018 host income was $168,700.
In Cattaraugus County, there are now approximately 180 hosts who share their homes via Airbnb, typically earning about $7,100 annually in supplemental income. The total 2018 guest arrivals for Cattaraugus County were 14,300, while total 2018 host income was $1.8 million.
In Erie County, there are now approximately 580 hosts who share their homes via Airbnb, typically earning about $8,000 annually in supplemental income. The total 2018 guest arrivals for Erie County were 77,500, while total 2018 host income was $6.7 million.
In Niagara County, there are now approximately 170 hosts who share their homes via Airbnb, typically earning about $11,300 annually in supplemental income. The total 2018 guest arrivals for Niagara county were 35,900, while total 2018 host income was $2.4 million.
“2018 was another great year for Airbnb in Western New York, with more local residents and small businesses able to benefit from the economic opportunities created by home sharing than ever before,” said Josh Meltzer, head of Airbnb Northeast Public Policy. “As we reflect on this past year and celebrate the beginning of a new one, we are proud to have played a small role in countless memories and cultural exchanges statewide — from summer trips to Bills games the holiday season. We look forward to continuing to help New York families earn extra income while allowing countless communities to enjoy the tourism economy in 2019.”
Founded in 2008, Airbnb offers affordable and unique travel and vacationing opportunities to a variety of locales worldwide. “Airbnb’s accommodation marketplace provides access to 5-plus million unique places to stay in more than 81,000 cities and 191 countries,” said Debold Fusco. “With experiences, Airbnb offers unprecedented access to local communities and interests through 15,000 unique, hand-crafted activities run by hosts across 1,000-plus cities around the world.”