Airbnb hosts are set to cash in on a hotel vacancy crunch as fans of the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots swarm the Twin Cities ahead of Super Bowl LII on Sunday.
The Minneapolis hotel industry has experienced overwhelming demand for its rooms in recent months, with roughly 40,000 rooms to accommodate more than 125,000 people expected to descend on the area for Super Bowl festivities. More than 94% of available rooms on the night of the Super Bowl were already booked as of Tuesday, according to data from Booking.com, with the few remaining options costing hundreds of dollars for a single night.
A dearth of available lodging is a major opportunity for Airbnb, who says its hosts will earn a combined $3.7 million in supplemental income during Super Bowl week, or roughly $1,000 each. Roughly 7,000 guests are expected to be accommodated at Airbnb locations this week, spending an estimated $286 per room per night and an additional $465 each per day at local establishments, the company said in a Super Bowl impact report.
“Our goal is that for many of the Super Bowl guests traveling to the Twin Cities for the first time, they’ll be motivated by their experiences with local hosts to come back again and again, ensuring a sustainable and long-term economic impact for the region,” Airbnb said.
Airbnb sought to expand its presence in the area in the months before the Super Bowl. Minneapolis and St. Paul have a total hotel inventory of about 40,000 rooms – less than half of the total available to travelers ahead of last year’s Super Bowl in Houston. The NFL booked 19,000 of the area’s available rooms months before the game, according to multiple reports.
The lodging service said more than 5,500 Airbnb hosts are active in the Twin Cities as of late January. Airbnb had originally set a goal of 2,000 by February 2018. Of the 7,000 Airbnb guests staying in the area this week, 14% traveled from New England-area states, while 29% traveled from Philadelphia-area states.