Heads up: Airbnb has removed 80% of its Japan listings, Nikkei Asian Review reports. The number of listings has dropped from 62,000 to just 13,800 ahead of a new Japanese law, minpaku, that will come into effect on June 15. This new law will require private home owners to register their properties with the government if they want to provide accomodation – and even then, they’ll be limited to 180 days a year. It’s a concerted effort on the part of the Japanese government to structure a previously highly unregulated space.
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What does this mean for travellers? For a start, there’s some uncertainty about what will happen to bookings made for listings that now no longer exist – Airbnb has not released a statement about this yet. But in the longterm, this move should help to protect Airbnb guests – better laws means better recourse should anything go wrong with your stay. All Japanese Airbnb hosts will now need to provide a registration number that proves their legitimacy.
This could mark the beginning of an Airbnb revolution; it’s said that Paris will be the next destination to crack down on Airbnb listings, and more cities will follow.
If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Japan, we can help.