Two weeks ago, the Barcelona City Hall organised a public hearing on the future of tourism in Barcelona. Around 100 members of the Airbnb community attended – regular, local people who make a little extra money by sharing their homes with respectful guests from around the world.
They shared personal stories about home sharing and how the money they make helps them to stay in Barcelona and afford living costs. They also described how they provide guests with authentic travel experiences, helping visitors skip the regular tourist traps in favour of the real Barcelona – living like a local in the homes of local residents, shopping at local businesses and eating in local restaurants.
City Hall listened to these accounts and called on the regional government to embrace home sharing. Felip Puig, Catalonia’s Minister for Enterprise, also said recently that he would like to see Barcelona embrace home sharing. And today, a special committee from the Parliament of Catalonia is busy speaking to members of the sharing economy before making recommendations on future rules for home sharing.
This is encouraging news for Airbnb hosts across Barcelona. They care deeply about their city and have long campaigned to be part of its future. They are delighted to have the opportunity to help shape future laws that will embrace home sharing and mark their home city world leader for innovation.
We are grateful that the authorities in Barcelona and across Catalonia have taken the time to listen to our community and have given such careful consideration to their stories. They want to make Barcelona a better place to live and visit and are the best advocates for this wonderful, historic city.
More and more cities across the world are embracing home sharing and we are delighted that Barcelona wants to join them. We look forward to working with everyone there on fair rules that support local residents and give Barcelona an opportunity to be a world leader for innovative tourism.