US Airbnb Usage Will Drop 60% This Year

We anticipate that usage will nearly recover to pre-pandemic levels by 2021

In our previous forecast, we anticipated high revenue and user growth for Airbnb. However, the pandemic has severely affected the company along with the overall digital travel industry.

This year, Airbnb’s US adult user base will fall 60.0% to 17.0 million. This is the first time that the company has experienced negative user growth. Despite the steep decrease, we expect the number of Airbnb users to nearly recover to pre-pandemic levels by 2021. Our estimate assumes that the US will begin recovering in H2 2020 and see improved treatments and a widely available vaccine next year.

“Airbnb has seen a significant decline in users because of the pandemic, however, it is expected to outperform the travel industry as some people will continue to travel,” said eMarketer forecasting analyst at Insider Intelligence Eric Haggstrom. “This travel will be closer to home and in areas that Airbnb can better serve vs. traditional hotels.”

Although Airbnb remains the dominant platform among home-sharing website users, increased competition is causing its share to decrease. It will capture 72.9% of home-sharing website users in 2020. By 2022, its share will drop to just under 70%, while still retaining its market dominance.