The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 19

and fire inspection standards, etc.)
hotels must follow. In the industry's
view, this manifestation creates a
competitive disadvantage for hotels,
since compliance costs money, and
adds an element of potentially-serious
uncertainty to the consumers'
experience of a particular destination.

The Strategy

Currently, Airbnb is primarily a
vehicle for leisure travellers, but if it
continues to grow at recent rates and
should it become more inviting to
economy-minded meetings and business
travellers, its impact on hotel revenue and
profits could be felt even more keenly.
Several high-profile industry associations
have launched aggressive campaigns with
the objective of shining a light of some
of Airbnb's practices the industry deems
questionable. They hope to educate
both local government and residents on
Airbnb's impact on neighbourhoods.
But at a grassroots level, the hotel
industry will almost certainly need to
offset the challenges posed by Airbnb by
building on its strengths and promoting

them vigorously so as to ensure an
informed consumer. Hotels can solidify
their case by reminding potential guests
of the overall experience that they
offer, which includes both a degree of
consistency and a range of amenities not
found at someone's house. Factors such
as prime locations, 24-hour check-in/
check-out, concierge service and brand
recognition can be used to entice
consumers. It's a matter of marketing
the elements that set hotels apart,
be it access to a massage therapist,
room service or even the ability to store
bags if the guest has a late flight.

The Bottom Line

While Airbnb consistently claims
the position as underdog for the
middle-class - heavily promoting
the idea of individuals just wanting
a little financial help to offset their
expenses - there is a case to be made that
this is the latest in what is essentially
a business battle. In this instance it's
between multi-national hotel chains and
a venture capital-backed company with a
value in the billions.

Experience has shown that there
is a frequently unknown quantity
as it relates to the sharing economy
and/or technological applications.
But, to the extent that it is not
possible to put this genie back in
the bottle for the foreseeable future,
the accommodation sector needs
to acknowledge that Airbnb, as
with other similar accommodation
providers, is not going away.
With that recognition, it should
incentivize the hotel industry to
proactively protect its share of the
market while simultaneously developing
impactful strategies to effectively
manage the threat posed by this
aggressive, disruptive competitor.
Ideally, to ensure some semblance of a
level playing field, the varied levels of
government should also be lobbied by
the tourism industry to strategically
and carefully consider regulatory
issues - to include tax, zoning
and licensing compliance - in the
interest of consumer safety and their
satisfaction as it relates to the overall
experience of a destination.
■

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886295_TheWestern.indd 1

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Road Explorer - Fall 2017

Industry Voice
Issues Update
Regulatory Update
Industry Controls Its Response to U.S. Travel Ban
Will Competition From Airbnb Disrupt the Travel Industry? It Depends on Who You Ask
OMCA’s 2017 Golf Tournament
Badder Bus Operations
Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
Travel Highlights Marketplace
Classifieds
Index of Advertisers
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Intro
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - bellyband1
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - bellyband2
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - cover1
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - cover2
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 3
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 4
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 5
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 6
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Industry Voice
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Issues Update
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 9
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 10
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 11
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 12
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Regulatory Update
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Industry Controls Its Response to U.S. Travel Ban
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 15
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Will Competition From Airbnb Disrupt the Travel Industry? It Depends on Who You Ask
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 17
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 18
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 19
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 20
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 21
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - OMCA’s 2017 Golf Tournament
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 23
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 24
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Badder Bus Operations
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 26
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 27
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 28
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 29
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 30
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 32
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Travel Highlights Marketplace
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 34
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Classifieds
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 36
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - Index of Advertisers
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - 38
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - cover3
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - cover4
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert1
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert2
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert3
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert4
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert5
The Road Explorer - Fall 2017 - outsert6
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