The coronavirus pandemic has upended travel across the globe and with a second wave already here, lockdowns are starting to go back in place. However, if a person does travel, it's best to stay with people from their household, experts say.
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In a recent travel update, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that sharing a rental home with people you live with is safer than friends or family you don't live with or a hotel where you're more likely to see people from outside your circle.
The riskiest option is a hostel or other dorm-like lodging with shared sleeping areas.
That has helped companies such as Airbnb, which has bounced back faster than the hotel industry. In September, FOX Business reported the home rental platform saw a huge demand for its bookings amid the pandemic, seeing an average 32% week-over-week growth from April 27 to the beginning of June.
The surge continued into July and August, despite hotel companies such as Hilton Worldwide and Marriott not seeing the same bounce back.
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“Airbnb spending in July was up 22% over the previous July, and spending the week of August 17 was 75% higher than the equivalent week in 2019,” FOX Business reported, citing data from Edison Trends.
Airbnb is poised to go public later this year, with expectations that it will raise approximately $3 billion in an initial public offering.
In a statement to FOX Business, the American Hotel & Lodging Association issued a rebuttal of the findings.
“While we understand the concern with the rest uptick in new COVID cases, there has been absolutely no significant hotel-related COVID outbreaks anywhere in the U.S," a spokesperson told FOX Business via email. "In fact, leading health experts have stated publicly that staying at a hotel is one of the safest activities. The hotel industry has adopted new cleaning and disinfection guidelines, Safe Stay, that have been reviewed by the CDC and endorsed by the Infectious Disease Society of America, former CDC officials, leading infection control experts and epidemiologists. Travelers across the country looking to include a hotel stay in their upcoming travel plans know that with the implementation of Safe Stay, hotels will be safer and cleaner than ever before.”
Its recent performance is not only outperforming other vacation options, like hotels or other home rental apps, but it is also up year-over-year, hitting new highs.
“Airbnb spending in July was up 22% over the previous July, and spending the week of August 17 was 75% higher than the equivalent week in 2019,” the report shared.
Renters should also be cautious about when they go, seeking to have at least a 72-hour buffer between guests, Dr. Natascha Tuznik, an infectious disease expert at the University of California, Davis, said in an interview with the Associated Press.
Currently, Airbnb is requiring hosts to have enhanced cleaning by Nov. 20, including scrubbing floors, washing linens on high heat and disinfecting high-touch items and areas such as doorknobs.
Tuznik also noted that rentals may have more fresh air than hotel rooms, while adding there have been very few reported coronavirus outbreaks linked to hotels.
If a traveler does stay at a hotel, they can check with the hotel to see what cleaning practices and social distancing procedures they are taking to keep their guests safe, Tuznik added.
Fox News' Alexandra Deabler and the Associated Press contributed to this story