Backpackers Association Sees Airbnb as Positive Platform
New Straits Time, Photo Credit to New Straits Time
clock 735d ago
hit 1,356

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Backpackers Association regards Airbnb, an online marketplace and hospitality service, as a positive platform that offers more accommodation choices to travellers.

Association president Richie Lee said he hoped that regulations could be enforced to ensure a healthy competition among accommodation operators.

He said members should adapt to lifestyle changes as people were becoming more Internet-savvy.

"Whether Airbnb is legal or illegal, operators have to embrace changes by offering more innovative and creative accommodation to attract customers.

"For example, they can have an eco-friendly concept or offer spa services.”

Lee said backpackers included professionals who were looking for the experience of mixing with locals.

He said backpacker hostels would usually have a common area for guests to meet and learn from one another.

"People have the misconception that travellers check in at backpackers' hostels because of the cheap accommodation.

"The backpackers actually want to enjoy the simplicity of life and they do not mind taking long-distance bus rides from one place to another.”

Lee said although anyone, including association members, could list his or her accommodation on Airbnb, he hoped that the authorities would look into regulations such as those on safety and taxation so that accommodation operators and property owners could compete fairly.

He said association members had spent at least RM300,000 on the rental and renovation of their accommodation and this excluded expenditure on wages, trading licences and other safety features.

It was reported that the state government had stood firm on the decision it was illegal for Sabah residents to lease their properties through Airbnb and that discussion were ongoing to fine-tune regulations related to Airbnb.



Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment.


Monthly Column
The staple of your property-related materials. It's all about being ahead of the game and with The Column, you get carefully selected information that will keep you informed and running with the pack. The best news, articles and properties on the market from the Property Hunter portal, conveniently wrapped and ready, just for you.

Weekly Window
Your weekly dose of what's hot and what's not in property. The window is your view into the realm of real estate in Malaysia, curated from our portal based on the most popular pieces over the week. For those who just can't get enough, this is for you. Ain't nobody got time for dailies anymore, weekly is the new daily.