Wednesday

19th Dec 2018

Strasbourg plenary pushes up Airbnb demand

  • On Monday's of the plenary week, roller cases are a regular sight in Strasbourg. (Photo: Peter Teffer)

There is a clear correlation between the timing of the plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg and usage of Airbnb by visitors from Brussels.

The European Parliament meets in Strasbourg for plenary sessions twelve times a year.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

  • There is a clear correlation between room rentals in Strasbourg by guests from Brussels and the EU parliament's Strasbourg session (click for enlargement of picture) (Photo: Airbnb)

“When it's the week of the parliament, all the hotels are full,” Strasbourg's vice-mayor, Alain Fontanel, told EUobserver.

Parliament staff have complained to Fontanel that hotels display significantly increased prices during "Strasbourg week".

This has led to some EU staffers to begin using Airbnb, an online platform which connects people who want to rent out their apartment or a room to those looking for accommodation.

"It is a good example of how Airbnb is helping destinations accommodate events by providing additional accommodation without the need for additional building projects, while supporting sustainable tourism and helping make efficient use of space," said Airbnb's Bernard D'heygere to EUobserver.​​

One Strasbourg-based Airbnb host, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said he “regularly” hosts trainees from the parliament, who “can't afford the price of a classical hotel”.

EU parliament spokeswoman Marjory van den Broeke told EUobserver that the EU parliament has no overview of how many of its staff stay in hotels or at Airbnb accommodation.

Car sharing

However, van den Broeke did have information on the way in which staff members are choosing to travel between Brussels and Strasbourg.

The parliament is promoting car-sharing and, in 2016, around 12 percent did just that.

The most popular mode of transport for parliament workers was still driving in their own car (34 percent), followed by making use of the chartered train (27 percent), and then the regular train (15 percent).

This article is part of EUobserver's annual Business in Europe magazine, which can be read in full here. This year, the magazine looks into how Europe manages the sharing economy. If you would like to receive the e-version of the magazine, please register for the newsletter.

Airbnb agrees to clarify pricing for EU

The justice commissioner says the accommodation-rental website will better inform users about prices, and about the legal status of their 'hosts'. Facebook, however, could face sanctions if it doesn't comply with EU rules.

Magazine

The Business of Nature

The European Commission plans to unveil a new bioeconomy strategy on Thursday. EUobserver's third edition of Business magazine looked at the many aspects of the bioeconomy – the parts of the economy that use renewable biological resources.

Magazine

A sustainable death wish

No one can escape death. But choices over how one's body is disposed of could either lessen or increase your carbon footprint.

Magazine

Bioeconomy is a win-win strategy for Finland

"The big problem in the world today is a lack of resources and a lack of bio-diversity," says Finnish environment minister Kimmo Tiilikainen. His country plans to produce what the world needs the most.

News in Brief

  1. EU repeats threat to US on 'Privacy Shield'
  2. Commission publishes no-deal Brexit contingency plan
  3. EU court slams Latvia for removing ECB member
  4. Financial Times picks Soros as 'Person of the Year'
  5. Italy strikes last-minute deal with EU over budget
  6. UK to unveil new immigration rules ending free movement
  7. Belgian PM resigns five months before elections
  8. EU agree to ban throwaway plastics to reduce marine litter

Magazine

The Business of Nature

The European Commission plans to unveil a new bioeconomy strategy on Thursday. EUobserver's third edition of Business magazine looked at the many aspects of the bioeconomy – the parts of the economy that use renewable biological resources.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership For Human RightsKyrgyz authorities have to immediately release human rights defender Azimjon Askarov
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersSeminar on disability and user involvement
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersInternational appetite for Nordic food policies
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Nordic Innovation House in Hong Kong
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region has chance to become world leader when it comes to start-ups
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General

Latest News

  1. Hackers stole thousands of internal EU files
  2. Muscat's one-man rule poses challenge for EU
  3. Orban protests target state media in new front
  4. Brexit and the Queen Sacrifice
  5. EU gives Switzerland another six months for a deal
  6. Fiscal discipline rules in eurozone are devastating
  7. EU capitals see weekend of tear gas and water cannon
  8. Bulgarian 'EU passports' whistleblower wants justice

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us