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Hotel association says vacation rentals account for half of reservations and must be regulated

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — The Association of Hotels of Riviera Maya says that next year, private vacation rentals will represent nearly 50 percent of the rooms being offered in the Playa del Carmen-Tulum corridor making it urgent to regulate the properties.

Manuel Paredes Mendoza, director of the Association says, “Vacation rental is a lodging service so you should know how many people are there. It is estimated that in Riviera Maya there are 20,000 rooms for holiday rentals mainly in Playa del Carmen and Tulum.

“There are more private rooms than the small hotels combined and almost half of the combined hotel rooms in Riviera Maya, which is 46,000.”

The calculations the association has made are based on the vacation rental offers found mainly on Internet platforms such as Airbnb and the growth of real estate projects during the last few years, he explained.

“There are about 10,000 units with an average of two rooms each, which gives the figure of 20,000 rooms compared to 46,000 rooms in the hotels, which currently represent 43.5 percent.

“I clarify that these are estimated calculations and that we do not know if they are accurate since there is no direct intervention by authorities,” he said.

In addition, hoteliers see vacation rentals as unfair competition since they do not pay the same taxes as hotels such as the 3 percent lodging tax. Their presence generates discrepancies with respect to reports of tourist influxes.

He says every day the hotels report their occupancy to the Tourist Promotion Council of Quintana Roo, and on those numbers, authorities measure the tourist behavior, which is subject to what the Tourism Barometer reports regarding the summer.

Tentatively there is a decrease of 2 to 3 percent, according to the director of Tourism of Solidarity, Rocío Ocampo Colmenares.

Paredes Mendoza says “It is undeniable that there are affectations and complaints by tourists for the sargasso, but at the hotel level, we stayed and the arrival of tourists grew by 2 percent nothing more, although the hotel occupation figures reflect a decrease because there are more hotel rooms than the summer of last year.

“However, it is clear that the arrival of tourists is much higher, so we are asking that tourists who stay in private vacation rentals are accounted for. The occupation rates reported and reflected in the barometer is in conflict with what is registered at the airport because the Promotion Council does not include vacation rentals.”