RE: “RDB to develop, standardise Airbnb home rental service” (The New Times, October 5).
This is where we will kill innovation and a market that could grow. Soon standardisation means taxation and a sterile environment (apartments) and that will make homes less appealing.
The tourism board should focus on creating regional and local traffic in all their sites then focus on 100 homes.
I’m glad RDB is standardising Airbnb offerings in Rwanda. This allows ordinary citizens to participate in and benefit from the development of Rwanda’s tourism sector. Standardisation, will hopefully also include quality control, safety and security standards, liability coverage...
What is wrong with taxation? It is a standard part of doing business anywhere in the world. How exactly does taxation or standardization lead to a “sterile environment”?
Standardisation does not mean all the accommodation facilities must look the same – it refers to setting and upholding quality standards. You find standards in the food services industry, for example, yet not all restaurants are the same; are they?
The function of standardisation is to ensure the market thrives by ensuring all stakeholders are able and committed to providing quality goods and services to the consumers of Rwanda’s rising tourism sector.
It is important to get this right; otherwise you will have one or two bad apples ruining the experience of tourists, thus negatively impacting Rwanda’s international reputation as a desirable tourist destination. And that is not something we want to happen; is it?
We want the tourism sector in this country to grow. It is another potential job-creating driver of the economy. So, we would do well to ensure people providing Airbnb services abide by the quality standards as stated by the RDB & Co.