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Airbnb limits Mexico bookings to medical personnel

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The hosting platform Airbnb on Monday has gone from listing “COVID-19 retreats” to reserving listings in Mexico only for medical personnel fighting COVID-19.

Non-essential leisure or business travelers — that is, anyone not assisting patients in the coronavirus crisis — are banned from booking homes and apartments until April 30.

Airbnb hosts will not only offer basic toiletries to their guests, but items like hand sanitizer and face masks.

“We are going through an unprecedented health crisis. At the moment it is preponderant that we all join efforts so that Mexico can get out of this emergency as soon as possible,” said Ángel Terral, director of Airbnb for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.

With this measure, the platform complies with contingency measures that the Mexican government decreed two weeks ago, which ordered the suspension of non-essential activities until April 30.

Mexico is in phase 2 of the COVID-19 epidemic, which has caused 406 deaths and 5,399 infections, of which a third have required hospitalization.

The Union of Secretaries of Tourism of Mexico (Asetur) has projected a 3% contraction of tourism GDP this year, a loss of US$2.4 billion, in a “conservative scenario.”

The economic impact of the platform’s new restriction is unknown since Airbnb does not publish the number of properties it lists in Mexico. But an estimated 1,143 hotels have closed in Mexico, risking 100,000 related jobs, according to the National Tourism Business Council (CNET).

With information from Infobae

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