Airbnb has launched its own health and safety protocols in South Africa and hopes to convince government to reconsider restrictions on its operations.
Although some travel restrictions have been lifted in the latest gazetted government regulations, the operation of Airbnb-style rentals is still prohibited.
"Preventing individuals and families from renting a private self-catering unit but allowing them to congregate with large groups in hotels and hostels defies logic and is impossible to reconcile with public health concerns,” said Airbnb Country Manager for Sub-Saharan Africa, Velma Corcoran.
Airbnb has launched the Enhanced Cleaning Protocol, developed with global experts, to set industry-leading cleaning standards for hosts in South Africa.
The protocol has been awarded a Safe Travels stamp by the World Travel and Tourism Council.
“We respectfully hope that the government will reconsider this decision, which will hurt local families, livelihoods and communities," said Corcoran, highlighting that Airbnb was a major source of income for many of its hosts.