AUSTRALIA has announced that it will end its online booking service and shut down all of the remaining locations in the country.
Key points:Airbnb said it would end its services in Australia on October 1, leaving users with just one option to book a room on its platformAirbnb has said it will continue to offer the services in Singapore but will no longer offer them to Australian usersOn Tuesday, the company said it had decided to shut down its Australian services as it continues to work on the closure of its existing Australian operations.
The announcement comes just over a month after Airbnb said it planned to close all its Australian locations.
The company said the decision to close the Australian locations had been made in light of increased competition, particularly in the hotel and tourism industries, and the fact that it would take more time to implement new systems to manage Airbnb hosts.
“We will be reopening the Australian Airbnb sites over the next few weeks, as part of our strategic plan to strengthen our operations in the Asia Pacific region,” Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky said in a statement.
“In line with the Airbnb Group’s global strategy to align with global trends, we will be making significant investments to ensure that Airbnb continues to thrive in the future, and we are committed to improving the service and increasing transparency and control of our platform.”
On Tuesday morning, Airbnb said users could still book their rooms via the app.
However, Airbnb is not offering any additional services, including payment, for its Australian customers.
The news comes just two days after Airbnb was forced to close its Singapore office.
On Tuesday the company announced it would close all the remaining Airbnb locations in South Korea.
It said it was closing the Singapore office, which it had opened in 2016, due to a “global shortage of Airbnb hosts and a significant increase in the demand for its accommodation services”.
However, the move does not affect the company’s Australian operations, which remain open.
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesker said on Tuesday that the company had made the decision “to accelerate our strategy to reduce and ultimately eliminate the need for the remaining Australian Airbnb properties”.
“We are focused on the future and we will continue making investments to enhance our platforms, expand our global reach and create new opportunities for our users,” Mr Chesky added.
Airbus A/S said it plans to continue operating its Australian properties and would not be closing its Singapore offices.
However it said it also would “continue to be active in other markets” including China.
“For us to continue to operate our business in Australia, we need to ensure the viability of our business, the level of customer service and the availability of our services, as well as maintaining a strong balance between the supply and demand side,” the statement said.