Impact and engagement
A happy coastal holiday income for some is an economic and social nightmare for others
The Airbnb phenomenon has exploded worldwide. The online peer-to-peer home-sharing platform operates in 191 countries, with more than five million listings.
Airbnb has also taken off in Australia, with 166,000 listings. Its growth has had the greatest impact in popular coastal destinations, like Byron Bay. This small community of about 9,000 people receives more than two million visitors annually. At 222:1, Byron Bay’s visitor-to-local ratio is among the highest in the world. Visitor numbers are expected to increase to 3.8 million by 2030, according to Byron Shire Council’s Sustainable Visitor Strategy. At the same time, Byron Shire has one of Australia’s least affordable regional rental housing markets.
Learn more about the impacts of Airbnb on the NSW North Coast.
Diving to decline: science, business and industry working together to save reefs from being loved to death
Tens of thousands of experienced and novice divers and snorkelers from around the globe flock to experience the splendour of the underwater world at prime locations in Vietnam, Malaysia, Australia and the Indonesian archipelago.
Marine tourism has become an economic livelihood which offers employment and broader social opportunities within these and other coastal communities across the Asia-Pacific.
But, as tourism expert Dr Kay Dimmock warns, for marine tourism to be successful there is a need for high-quality marine resources.
"Dive tourism is an important source of income for South-East Asia, but its future depends on the effective management of healthy coral reefs," says Dr Dimmock, Senior Lecturer in Faculty of Business, Law and Arts at Southern Cross University.