The British Hospitality Association (BHA) has repeated its call for greater transparency on sharing websites such as Airbnb, alleging that it encourages what it calls “illegal hotels” and professional landlords.
The appeal comes as Airbnb is reported to be delisting – or removing – apparent multiple-property landlords from its site, a week after news broke of the theft of an £8,000 Banksy art print from an Airbnb property. It also comes soon after the BHA’s chief executive Ufi Ibrahim suggested that rooms and properties for rent via sharing economy websites put the UK’s reputation for hospitality at risk.
The BHA has maintained that by using sharing economy websites, hosts can escape the legal regulations on tax and health and safety normally adhered to by hotels and landlords. It also criticised the sharing economy platforms for its alleged lack of data available on the number of hosts that are operating multiple properties for rent.
A BHA spokesperson said: “The BHA is calling for greater transparency of these intermediary websites, regulation and enforcement of health and safety and food standards, as well as compliance with the maximum 90 days a year letting allowed in London without planning permission.”