To say that Airbnb is on a roll in the Hudson Valley would be an understatement. Just last year, locals earned a combined total of more than $66 million in supplemental income from overnight guests to the region. Not bad for a side gig, huh?
Of course, some weekends are bigger hits for local hosts than others. During the top five local travel weekends of 2019, Hudson Valleyites welcomed a whopping total of 55,800 guests for short-term stays — and earned $13.8 million from them.
Can you guess which weekends they were?
Taking the number one spot is Memorial Day weekend. During that sweet spot between spring and summer when beaches open and grills fire up, the Hudson Valley saw 11,800 guest arrivals with a total host income of $2.8 million. Close behind it in numbers, but not in season, is Columbus Day weekend. Otherwise known as the prime weekend for leaf peeping, it saw 11,700 guest arrivals and $2.5 million in earned host income.
In third place, Labor Day weekend welcomed 11,300 guests, followed by the weekend after Columbus Day in October with 10,600 guests and Woodstock anniversary weekend in August with 10,400 guests.
“2019 was another great year for Airbnb in the Hudson Valley, with more residents embracing the economic opportunities offered by home sharing — and small businesses and entire communities benefiting as a result,” observes Airbnb Head of Northeast Public Policy Josh Meltzer. “We hope that these insights will help local New Yorkers who are looking to open up their home as a short-term rental in identifying some of the best times of the year to do so.”
Just as Airbnb is a boon for Hudson Valley hosts, so too is it beneficial for area businesses. According to an Airbnb survey of hosts across the nation, 92 percent of them recommend restaurants or cafés to guests, while 56 percent of them recommend cultural activities in the surrounding area. In 2019, Airbnb guests in New York State were projected to spend approximately $795 million at nearby eateries. This number is up 17 percent from $680 million in 2018.
As for which Hudson Valley counties attracted the largest populations of Airbnb guests in 2019, we have those numbers, too. Of the seven counties in the region surveyed, Airbnb reports that Ulster County led the way with 184,600 guests and $31.9 million in host income over the course of the year. Dutchess County ranked second with 57,700 guests and $10 million in host income, followed by Westchester County with 36,800 guests and $8.8 million in host income.
Do you have an Airbnb or are you thinking about starting one? Let us know about your experience as a host (or guest) in the comments!