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Airbnb and CTO strengthen partnership to drive regional tourism


Airbnb and CTO strengthen partnership to drive regional tourism

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Chris Lehane, Head of Global Policy and Public Affairs for Airbnb and Hugh Riley, CEO and Secretary General of the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on October 24, during Riley’s visit to Airbnb headquarters in San Francisco.

The MOU signifies the organisations’ agreement to cooperate on areas of mutual interest including promoting Caribbean countries as tourism destinations and joint research on the impact of home-sharing on economic recovery post the 2017 hurricane season.

Airbnb hosted Hugh Riley, CEO and Secretary General of the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), at its San Francisco headquarters and announced new commitments to promoting authentic and sustainable travel in the region, as well as continuing to grow economic opportunity.

Last year alone, over 1.6 million guests booked accommodation in the Caribbean through the platform, an increase of 117 per cent compared to 2016. Through collaboration with local stakeholders, Airbnb has demonstrated its commitment to support healthy tourism and has signed collaboration or voluntary tax collection agreements with 14 countries in the region.

During Riley’s visit to Airbnb headquarters, the CTO and Airbnb signed the MOU pledging to cooperate on areas of mutual interest including: the promotion of Caribbean countries as desirable tourism destinations; the undertaking of joint research to understand the impact of the home-sharing on economic recovery following the 2017 hurricane season and other areas of mutual interest to both organizations.

“We are proud of the fact that the Caribbean is in such high demand among diverse and very discerning global travellers. Essentially Airbnb is helping to make our region more competitive and to spread the benefits of the tourism industry across traditional and non-traditional segments of our communities,” Riley said.

“Airbnb is deeply committed to the Caribbean and we are proud to take this next step with the CTO to advance our mission of local, authentic, and sustainable travel in the region. The platform helps diversify the tourism sector, attract new travellers, and empower over 50 000 hosts across the region,” said Lehane.

Through various marketing partnerships in the region, the platform has collaborated with regional tourism boards and enabled destinations to reach Airbnb’s vast global community through the company’s robust media platforms. This broader partnership with the CTO includes exploring collaborative ways to market the region and partnerships to facilitate destination marketing, host recruitment, improving the guest experience, and the expansion of disaster relief efforts. 

Airbnb will continue working with governments to promote the benefits of visiting the Caribbean to help stimulate inclusive, sustainable tourism throughout the region. (PR)