Earlier this month we launched The Great Rebalance of European Travel, a series of commitments to work with communities in Europe to help rebalance tourism following the pandemic.
Key priorities for this work include supporting the regulation of short-term rentals and collaborating with governments to redistribute tourism and help prevent the return of overtourism, where too much tourism is concentrated in too few places.
In this spirit and following updates and progress reports from EU policymakers on the Digital Services Act – new EU legislation to harmonise rules for digital services across Europe and make them clear and consistent for consumers, governments and platforms – we have published an updated position paper on the DSA to highlight our support for the EU’s work.
We support the draft Digital Services Act and the fundamental principles of this legislation. We have engaged with the EU’s legislative process at every opportunity and we always seek the best outcome for all stakeholders. That is why we backed calls for an EU regulator for digital services and we are pleased that independent cross-border oversight is a central piece of the Commission’s plans.
Airbnb has built the City Portal to help support any future harmonised regulatory framework, and we are already introducing this tool in destinations across Europe. The City Portal is our purpose-built tool that provides governments and tourism organizations with access to data, insights and industry-first compliance tools to help governments implement fair and proportionate short-term rental rules. For example Governments with applicable short-term rental laws can utilize the City Portal to view Airbnb listings within their registration systems. We have also signed a data sharing partnership with the EU Commission to further help ensure that policymakers have access to the information they need as we move forward.
We believe that the DSA will make Europe stronger and provide clarity for governments, platforms and consumers. We also recognise that this broad legislation needs to be accompanied by industry-specific proposals for short-term rentals to truly drive a harmonised approach to regulating our industry across Europe.
To deliver the best possible outcomes for consumers, governments and platforms, we believe that the EU Commission’s work on the DSA and an EU-wide approach to short-term rental regulation should be developed together in parallel and accelerated, and we want to work with the EU Commission, European Parliament and member states to support that effort.
We recognise that this is complex work and we believe that a joined-up approach is the most efficient and effective way to drive harmony in Europe and provide a more complete and actionable solution to the bloc’s fragmented regulatory framework, as soon as possible.
As work on EU rules proceeds, Airbnb is making progress with national governments to bring the fundamental principles of the DSA to life now. Already this year we have signed agreements with the governments of France, Greece and the Netherlands, which are examples of how we want to move forward in collaboration with governments and in concert with the rest of the platform economy.
We will continue to work with governments at all levels as we move forward. We will continue to support fair and proportionate rules for short-term rentals and collaborate with governments to help rebalance tourism so it truly benefits everyone.
You can read Airbnb’s full updated position paper on the Digital Services Act here.