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Airbnb -  Some 17 million travelers from around the world stayed with Airbnb hosts in 150 countries this summer from May to the end of August, according to a summer metrics report Airbnb released today. And that number hasn’t topped-off: According to the company another 1 million travelers booked Airbnb stays for this Labor Day weekend in the U.S. The number of summer guests swelled from 7.4 million last summer to more than twice that amount this summer.

  • Airbnb guests from Paris, New York City and Seoul were this summer’s largest source markets and they made the most bookings for Lisbon, Upstate New York, and Osaka, Japan, respectively.
  • South Korea, along with Japan and Singapore, are the company’s fastest growing markets overall and China is one of the fastest-growing markets in terms of country of origin for travelers booking stays outside their country.
  • The report reveals the average age of this summer’s Airbnb guests was 35 years old, which is considered the oldest age for millennials, and female guests slightly outnumbered male guests–the split was 54% to 46% globally.

LEISURE LETTER (9/8/2015) - Airbnb, CCL, RCL, UBER - airbnb


CCL - A fire in the engine room of Carnival Liberty, while docked today at St. Thomas, has caused the evacuation of all passengers and crew.  No injuries have been reported and the ship is expected to depart after 8:00 p.m tonight, resuming its Caribbean cruise.  CCL said in a statement, “All guests are safely ashore in St. Thomas where they have been receiving assistance from Carnival personnel. The fire has been extinguished by the ship's automated suppression system and crew have confirmed the fire is out. The cause of the fire has yet to be determined.”


RCL -  Celebrity Cruises has canceled all overnight stops in Istanbul for the rest of the cruise season due to ongoing security concerns.  Three ships -- Celebrity Reflection, Celebrity Equinox and Celebrity Constellation - and eight itineraries are affected. Celebrity has already skipped overnights in Istanbul twice in the past few weeks. The latest move comes just four days after the United States government issued a Travel Warning for Turkey, stating "U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Turkey should be alert to the potential for violence."


UBER - U.S. ride-hailing service Uber Technologies Inc will enter 100 more Chinese cities over the next year, doubling a previous goal set just three months ago.  

  • Uber’s China unit currently operates in almost 20 cities, Kalanick said at an event in Beijing held by Uber investor Baidu Inc.  
  • The speech comes a day after Kalanick said the China unit had raised $1.2 billion during ongoing fundraising, while people familiar with the matter told Reuters that larger local rival Didi Kuaidi had brought in $3 billion.
  • "When we started this year, we were about 1% market share. Today, nine months later, we're looking at about 30%-35% market share," Kalanick said. 



Macau Jewelry Sales - In the traditionally strong month of August, local jewelers still posted a much weakened retail performance than a year ago, say the Macau Goldsmiths Guild.  Despite the improved consumer sentiment of August, jewelery retailers here experienced a sales turnover fall of at least 20 per cent year-on-year in the holiday period even though some of them have adjusted their product mix to include more mid and low-priced items. 


Great Singapore Sale Statistics - Spending during the Great Singapore Sale (GSS) rose 2.2% over the previous year, as increased purchases by visitors offset lower spending by locals, MasterCard said on Monday.

  • Citing transactions made by local and overseas-issued MasterCard card holders, the credit card company said visiting cardholders spent S$708 million during GSS, a rise of 15.3% compared to a year ago. 
  • Spending by local cardholders, however, dipped to S$1.41 billion from S$1.46 billion in 2014.
  • MasterCard said spending on restaurants and eating places were the top category for visitors from Australia, Malaysia, China and Japan.


Australian Online GamingThe Australian government intends to reevaluate online gambling operations overseas that take bets in Australia, Xinhua reports.

The Chinese official news agency quotes Social Services Minister Scott Morrison as saying the online gambling market in Australia is worth $1.6 billion a year but that 60% of online betting revenue goes abroad, where the Australian taxman and regulators cannot touch it.  Mr Morrison said the government would do a “serious review” of Australia’s law on gambling.



  • Pennsylvania GGR - SSS (3.32%) YoY 
  • Maryland GGR -  SSS (7.62%) YoY 

Takeaway:  As we pointed out in our 8/31/15 note "REGIONAL GAMING: AUGUST JUST A BLIP", August regional gaming revenue was likely to underperform July. The first two regional gaming states to report suggest we were right. However, we still think September will bounce back.