The 2018 Commonwealth Games will bring athletes from over 70 countries to the Gold Coast, as well as tens of thousands of tourists.
While the government is confident of providing rooms for all visitors, the numbers may not stack up.
Noor Gillani reports.
Gold Coast’s largest sporting spectacular is expected to attract more than 100,000 people from around the nation and overseas.
With so many needing a place to stay the Commonwealth Games will likely be a boon for accommodation businesses.
But the city’s capacity of about 30,000 beds means many will struggle to find a place.
With one and a half million people expected to attend events during the games, the question looms – will the Gold Coast be able to bear the brunt?
The state government is confident it will.
Kate Jones, Minister for Tourism and Commonwealth Games: “One of the great things about the Gold Coast is there is a real mix of accommodation offering. We’re also partnering with Ninja Camping which will provide new camping opportunities and a number of public spaces on the Gold Coast, including, for example, school ovals. All operators are making as many beds and rooms available as possible, at a fair and reasonable price.”
Despite the government’s assurances, some providers will be taking advantage of the high demand.
One Airbnb host revealed that a number of her properties have booked-out for next year at three times the normal rate.
Nadine Beveridge, AirBnb Property Manager: “For Airbnb properties, well they will have, people who wouldn’t normally put their place on Airbnb are listing for the games. And so after the games, a lot of them would just drop-off I imagine.”
The online accommodation provider reportedly helped 66,000 people find rooms for the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Nadine Beveridge, Airbnb Property Manager: “There will be plenty of space for people to – to accommodate people. The question will be can you attract people to your place.”
With the finish line in sight, preparations are full-speed ahead at the luxury Royal Pines resort.
Susan Griffiths, Sales and Marketing Manager at RACV Royal Pines: “Aw, it’s absolutely going to go crazy. So for us, just today, I got an inquiry for 500 rooms over the Comm Games two-week period. So I think as we get closer and closer, there’ll be absolutely more rooms and more demand.”
While the Games are great for business, price hikes could be a major affordability problem for those needing accommodation.
Visitors with limited budgets may have to pitch tent further away from the Gold Coast and use public transport.
But with services like the city’s G-link also expected to come under pressure – it’s unclear how well Commonwealth Games’ fans will be catered for.
Noor Gillani, QUT News.