airbnb sf ad1

Airbnb apologizes and removes ads in San Francisco

Airbnb apologizes for a series of ads posted in San Francisco that offered alternate suggestions as to what the city could do with the money Airbnb pays in hotel tax. Some of the ads offended San Francisco residents. For example, one of the ads recommended the tax dollars be used to keep public libraries open later in the evening.

Another ad, posted on a city bus stop, suggested that the city should be feeding expired parking meters.

Each ad was “addressed” to various public agencies and told them how to spend the estimated $12 million in hotel taxes paid by Airbnb hosts and guests.

airbnb sf ad2On Facebook, San Francisco resident Martha Kenney wrote a response, “Out of your $12 mil of hotel tax, only 1.4% percent goes to the SF Public Libraries. So that’s $168,000. Divided by the 868 library staff, we have $193 per person. Assuming each employee works 5 days per week minus holidays, this is $0.78 per employee per day. Since that’s significantly under San Francisco minimum wage ($12.25/hr), I doubt that your hotel tax can keep the libraries open more than a minute or two later”.

Airbnb was taking down the ads after they were posted.

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