The rolling back of President Barack Obama's initiative to expand relations with the country could have negative consequences for Airbnb's business in Cuba, which launched in 2015. It began welcoming U.S. citizens to Cuba last year. The majority of travelers to Cuba come from outside the United States. Still, 35% of guests come from the U.S. In total, Cuban hosts have made $40 million from Airbnb since its arrival.
Here is Airbnb's response to the potential travel changes:
Over the last two years, thousands of Airbnb guests from around the world have traveled to Cuba to share ideas, experiences, and cultures. Airbnb has helped individual Cuban people earn extra income and we have seen how travel can break down barriers and promote understanding.
Travel from the U.S. to Cuba is an important way to encourage people-to-people diplomacy. While we are reviewing what this policy could mean for this type of travel, we appreciate that the policy appears to allow us to continue to support Airbnb hosts in Cuba who have welcomed travelers from around the world.
We look forward to reviewing the details of the policy and speaking with the Administration and Congress about this issue in the weeks and months ahead.