Airbnb’s Global Support to Local Economies: Output and Employment

13 March 2017
By Dr. David Harrison Jr., Conor Coughlin, Dylan Hogan, and Eli Shakun

NERA Managing Director Dr. David Harrison, Analyst Conor Coughlin, and Research Associates Dylan Hogan and Eli Shakun developed estimates of the support that Airbnb provides to local economies—in the form of jobs and output—in the major global cities in which Airbnb operates. The collaborative study was commissioned as part of Airbnb’s recently announced Economic Empowerment Agenda.

The NERA study focuses on Airbnb’s 200 largest markets. Using data provided by Airbnb, NERA developed detailed estimates of the support that Airbnb provides to local economies from out-of-town visitor spending and related income to Airbnb hosts (and their spending). Increased spending on these goods and services triggers additional economic activity in the local economy, leading to multiplier effects. NERA used multipliers from the IMPLAN Group, LLC, a leading provider of economic impact data and economic modeling software.

NERA developed estimates of Airbnb’s 2016 global contributions based upon the sum of results for the 200 cities in the study. NERA found that, in 2016, Airbnb support to local communities totaled about $61 billion in output and roughly 730,000 in jobs. Using the 2016 estimates and illustrative growth rates based on historical Airbnb growth, NERA showed illustrative global contributions for future years. These calculations showed Airbnb supporting 1.3 million jobs globally in 2017 and 2.0 million jobs in 2018.