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Airbnb travel helps 2 in 3 UK Hosts afford rising living costs



By staying in a listing on Airbnb, holidaymakers are helping local families to boost their income. The average UK Host earns almost £5,500 a year by sharing their space on Airbnb.1 That’s equivalent to almost two months’ additional pay for the median UK household. 

A major new survey from Airbnb reveals that this year, two thirds of Hosts are planning to use the money earned from hosting to cover the increased costs of day-to-day life. At the same time, over a third of Hosts plan to host more in 2024 because of the economic climate. The cost of living crisis is a key driver in people taking up hosting on Airbnb with over a third of UK Hosts turning to Airbnb to help make ends meet. 

The latest data from the Office for National Statistics highlights that four in ten adults find it difficult to afford their rent or mortgage, making the additional income generated by guests travelling on Airbnb, a lifeline for many.2 In 2023, nearly four in ten Hosts shared that income earned from hosting on Airbnb helped them to stay in their home.

For Airbnb Host Lucy, sharing her space meant she could enjoy her maternity leave with her son and continue to support her family at the same time.

Every person who chose to stay in Lucy’s home over the last few years, helped her, her family and the local community. The same thing happens every time holidaymakers opt for a listing on Airbnb. 

Many Hosts use the income to help them and their families live a more comfortable life with a third of UK Hosts saying they use the additional income to treat their families to things they couldn’t otherwise afford. Nearly half of UK Hosts use the extra money to make improvements to their home and over thirty per cent use the additional funds to go on holiday. 

Nearly a third of UK Hosts are retired, and one in five work in education, health and social care or hospitality. One Host, Sophie, began hosting after she and her husband were made redundant in 2017. Now, they have retrained as teachers and use the additional income from hosting to help them afford the rising cost of living. 

Spending by guests and Hosts benefits the local economy too. Over 9 in 10 Hosts make recommendations to their guests of local businesses to visit. Two thirds of Hosts recommend  hidden gems that are not well known to tourists. A recent BiGGAR economics study found that spending by guests and Hosts on Airbnb boosted the UK economy by £2.9 billion and supported over 100,000 jobs across the UK in 2022.3  

“As living costs continue to bite, hosting on Airbnb is an economic lifeline that is helping people to pay their bills and afford the things that are important to them. When holidaymakers make the decision to book an Airbnb, it’s local families, businesses and communities that benefit. We are proud of the role our guests play in helping everyday people across the country live more comfortably.”  

Amanda Cupples, General Manager for the UK and Northern Europe at Airbnb

Based on feedback from 4,399 Airbnb Hosts surveyed between 1 January 2023 and 31 December 2023. All additional Host-centric survey data in this report originates from this survey.

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