Apr 25, 2018

Airbnb says it could save the government billions

Photo: Chesnot / Getty Images

Airbnb has a new report that argues that the federal government could save as much as $4.1 billion over 10 years by staying in its properties rather than hotels.

But, but but: Even if the government shifted some to Airbnb, it's unlikely to stop using hotels altogether. Nonetheless, Airbnb says that shifting a quarter of travel nights to Airbnb listings could potentially save more than $100 million per year.

What they're saying: The home sharing site also makes the case that doing so would put money into ordinary people's hands and help federal workers get closer to the communities they serve.

What's next: CEO Brian Chesky will make the case in person later today when he keynotes an Internet Association dinner in D.C.

Hotel industry response: Not surprisingly, the hotel crowd didn't appreciate Airbnbs comments.

“Airbnb’s sponsored study is nothing more than a ginned-up collage of misleading statements and doctored stats in attempt to get a piece of the government travel business," the American Hotel and Lodging Association said in a statement to Axios.

"The fact is they still lack transparency in paying taxes nor are they complying with state and local regulations in many jurisdictions. Combine that with the fact they are depleting affordable housing throughout the country, government officials should pause in considering Airbnb as a legitimate, viable option for federal travel."

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 p.m. ET: 838,061 — Total deaths: 41,261 — Total recoveries: 174,115.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in confirmed cases. Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 p.m. ET: 177,452 — Total deaths: 3,440 — Total recoveries: 6,038.
  3. Public health updates: More than 400 long-term care facilities across the U.S. report patients with coronavirus — Older adults and people with other health conditions are more at risk, new data shows.
  4. Federal government latest: The White House and other institutions are observing several models to better understand and prepare cities for when the coronavirus is expected to peak in the U.S.
  5. In Congress: New York Rep. Max Rose deploys to National Guard to help coronavirus response.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Misinformation in the coronavirus age.
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U.S. coronavirus updates: White House studies models projecting virus peak

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The White House and other institutions are observing several models to better understand and prepare cities for when the coronavirus is expected to peak in the U.S.

The state of play: The coronavirus is expected to peak in the U.S. in two weeks, but many states like Virginia and Maryland will see their individual peaks well after that, according to a model by the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

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FDA authorizes two-minute antibody testing kit to detect coronavirus

Currently, it takes days to produce results from testing kits. Photo: Sergei Malgavko\TASS via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency approval Tuesday for a serological testing kit produced by Bodysphere Inc. that can detect a positive or negative result for COVID-19 in two minutes.

Why it matters: Access to testing has improved in the U.S. thanks to commercial labs, but the average wait time for a patient's results is four to five days — with some reports of it taking more than a week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health