“Sports tourists are generally willing to spend more than the usual tourists, so it would not be a surprise if hotels significantly increase their room rates (during the Olympics),” Matheson said.
The benefits of the Olympic Games would also extend to the newest lodging alternative: Airbnb and other online host platforms. The Beacon-UC Riverside study estimated that spending by visitors staying at Airbnb properties could jump by $200 million over what would ordinarily be expected during the summer months.
Airbnb, of course, stands to benefit whether the Olympics are held in Los Angeles or either of its two competitor cities, Paris or Budapest. But Airbnb spokesman Christopher Nulty said in an email that in Los Angeles, “thousands of middle-class Angelenos share their homes to earn supplemental income and Airbnb listings are spread out across the city of Los Angeles, which means the economic impact would be spread out to neighborhoods that are not typically tourist destinations.”
What’s more, Matheson said, this money stands more chance of remaining in the community.
“Most of the additional revenues that hotels take in will likely be funneled to the headquarters location, whereas the additional revenue taken in by Airbnb hosts is more likely to be spent in their neighborhood,” he said.
Besides the money from visitor spending, the study said the games would generate up to $167 million in increased tax revenue, up to 79,000 new full-time jobs and about $5 billion increased worker earnings.
LA 2024 released a revised budget last month for the Summer Olympics and Paralympics of $5.3 billion, which the committee said would be offset entirely by revenues from broadcast rights, ticket sales, and corporate sponsorships. The budget relies heavily on keeping costs in check through the use of existing facilities.
The International Olympic Committee is set to select a host city at its September meeting in Lima, Peru.
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