If you’re looking to travel to the Netherlands in the next few years, you may want to act sooner rather than later — that is, if you intend on staying in an Airbnb during your vacation. Lawmakers in Amsterdam have decided to reduce the number of nights hosts are able to rent out their homes by 50 percent, which means that a host can only offer lodging for 30 nights per year. The new rule will go into effect in 2019. While Airbnb is not the only company affected by the decision (the law will apply to all home sharing platforms), it’s certainly one of the best-known and most widely-used services by both guests and hosts.
Airbnb has faced a string of challenging regulations in the last few years. For example, Paris requires its hosts to register their apartments through the city to ensure compliance. The French capital also limits the number of nights apartments can be made available, though it’s far less stringent than Amsterdam at 120.
And back in 2016, Berlin banned renting out entire homes and apartments to Airbnb guests (unless hosts have a permit). Should folks try to sneak their way around this law, the repercussions could be expensive — hosts face fines of up to $115,000 for giving their guests complete privacy.
It’s not only in Europe that the rental platform has faced regulatory hurdles. The company has long been at odds with its hometown of San Francisco — in 2016, Airbnb sued San Francisco for what it called a “broken registration process” after the city required Airbnb and similar services to post registration numbers on advertised listings … or be fined $1,000 per day until the listings were removed. Since then, tempers have cooled, as the two parties settled their disagreements in May 2017, with Airbnb agreeing to be more transparent about its hosts and comply with existing registration laws.
While Airbnb isn’t likely to go to court over Amsterdam’s latest decision, the company has noted its disappointment. “The Airbnb community — consisting of 19,000 Amsterdam landlords — is disappointed in your intention to have large hotels prevail over Amsterdam families who occasionally share their homes and punish them for the shortcomings of other platforms to promote responsible holiday rentals,” Bo de Koning, the company’s public policy manager for the Netherlands and Scandinaiva, said in a statement. Only time will tell if the city decides to re-up its limit to the current 60 days.