Govt to regulate Airbnb - limiting location, nights stayed, income earned, etc.

pixabay.com, 2019

We are not being disrupted… they must have rules so we can level the playing field… We are not restricting competition…

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO - Tourism Business Council of SA

These platforms give people a chance to run a small business... The market should adapt and compete…

Rosalind Lake, Director - Norton Rose

The South African government will soon start regulating Airbnb.

On Friday, Government published the “Tourism Amendment Bill” which stipulates that “short-term home rentals” will fall under the Tourism Act.

The amendment empowers the Minister of Tourism to lay down “thresholds” for Airbnb in South Africa.

These thresholds may include limits on the number of nights that guests are allowed to stay or how much income an Airbnb may earn.

Another aspect of the proposed new regulation is the determination of zones where Airbnbs are allowed.

Airbnb, much like with ridesharing app Uber and metered taxis, has come under fire from established hotels and bed-and-breakfasts.

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed Rosalind Lake (Director at Norton Rose) and Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa (CEO at Tourism Business Council of SA).

  • What is the TBCSA’s position on the newly published Bill?

  • What does the Bill try to achieve?

  • What could the effect be of the Bill?

  • How does Airbnb fit into the tourism economy?

  • What is the TBCSA’s take on the proposed “thresholds”?

Listen to the interviews in the audio below (and scroll down for more quotes from it).

We do support regulations… At first, we thought there won’t be a big impact… it’s starting to have a huge impact…

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO - Tourism Business Council of SA

Airbnb is a platform. There are others… The issue is not the technology. The issue is that the technology is allowing homes to become hotels [without regulations]… We’re going to have chaos… Let’s have entry rules…

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO - Tourism Business Council of SA

Yes, it [Airbnb] does benefit tourism in the broader sense…

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO - Tourism Business Council of SA

More regulation is not what small businesses in South Africa needs… [But] You can understand where both sides are coming from…

Rosalind Lake, Director - Norton Rose

Getting people to register, it might be challenging…

Rosalind Lake, Director - Norton Rose

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