Data shows demand increasing for short-term vacation rentals

Hotel comparable vacation home rentals are catching up to traditional hotel models, with occupancy during the second quarter of the year averaging 50 percent, compared to the average of 75 percent occupancy at major hotel properties on New Providence and Paradise Island.

Data from the Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association and the Ministry of Tourism showed that total room revenue grew by 24 percent while short-term rental data provider AirDNA reported that room nights in the off-resort business grew by 39.3 percent between April and June this year.

“The increasing demand for short-term vacation rentals, particularly in New Providence and the smaller Family Islands, highlighted continued gains in off-resort business. Indeed the latest data from AirDNA shows that during the second quarter, the total number of room nights sold strengthened by 39.3 percent over the same period last year,” the Quarterly Economic Review released by the Central Bank of The Bahamas yesterday noted.

“In terms of the components, bookings for ‘hotel comparable’ and ‘entire place’ listings rose by 48.6 percent and 38.5 percent, respectively. In particular, hotel comparable rentals recorded an average occupancy rate of 50.6 percent, a gain of 5.2 percentage points over the same period a year earlier.”

However, while the average daily room rate for hotels and resorts grew by 8.9 percent to $261.98 per night, average rental rate for vacation homes decreased by 10.5 percent to $152.72 per night.

“Similarly, entire place listings posted an average occupancy rate of 51.5 percent, compared to 46.4 percent in the second quarter of 2018, while the average rental rate declined by 2.6 percent to $408.53,” the report noted.

Last month Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis urged Family Island residents to capitalize on the growing demand for vacation home rentals.

There are currently about 5,000 homes in The Bahamas that are listed on vacation home rental site Airbnb.

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Paige McCartney

Paige joined The Nassau Guardian in 2010 as a television news reporter and anchor. She has covered countless political and social events that have impacted the lives of Bahamians and changed the trajectory of The Bahamas. Paige started working as a business reporter in August 2016. Education: Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2006 with a BA in Radio and Television News

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