Prague vs. Airbnb

Today in the Observer, ‘I’m a stranger in my own city’: Prague takes on Airbnb to dam flood of tourists:

Speaking to the Observer in his office in Prague’s new city hall – near the heart of the tourist district – Hřib, a member of the Pirate party, said the idea was the focal point of a scheme to “give Prague back to the people of Prague” and mitigate the negative effects of tourism.

The fall of Prague: ‘Drunk tourists are acting like they’ve conquered our city’ He said Airbnb’s growth had turned the city, once the capital of the Holy Roman Empire and later a jewel of the Habsburg monarchy, into a “distributed hotel” and that failure to regulate it was “eating the city from inside”.

Comments

Ton Zijlstra's picture
Ton Zijlstra on February 3, 2020 - 08:20 Permalink

Amsterdam has much the same issues as Prague above.
The Dutch High Court just issued a verdict that makes Airbnb illegal in Amsterdam (and NL as a whole) for now. Or rather the verdict makes people renting out their homes illegal, unless they have a permit. Amsterdam had issued rules that didn't require a permit, but set strict preconditions and issued fines on that basis. Judges now found that Amsterdam wasn't allowed to go around the permit requirement (and thus that any fines based on the workaround were not legal either). The key of the issue is 'withdrawing houses from the housing market' by renting them out to tourists, displacing people from the city that way who would otherwise live there. A permit is needed, and I think given by default if you only rent out for at most 30 nights per year and it is your registered primary residence. In short if renting out your house is not adding to housing pressure on the markt.