A stimulus program to boost the tourism business in Los Angeles Koreatown is starting.
Airbnb and Koreatown Youth & Community Center (KYCC) held a press conference on March 30 to announce that a pilot program is set to launch to stimulate the home-sharing business within the Korean community.
During the press conference, Airbnb highlighted that it will provide the support to boost tourism revenue for small business owners in Koreatown by providing home-sharing services with its collaboration with KYCC through the program.
“This the first pilot program of this kind in history of the Korean community in the U.S.,” said John Choi, Airbnb’s Southern California policy manager. “That’s because Koreatown has become immensely popular among tourists in L.A. I hope this program benefits Korean homeowners and small business owners.”
Airbnb revealed that more than 2 million of its users have visited Southern California by using the services posted on the website. Among them, approximately 948,000 visited L.A. The number of tourists from South Korea to L.A. has also risen by 11 percent, while the Mid-Wilshire area is growing exponentially as the host for tourists.
“Even the Chinese tourists pick L.A. Koreatown as one of their most sought-after destinations,” Choi said. “The demand for Koreatown is only growing.”
KYCC added that the part of the program’s aim is to raise the approachability of the home-sharing culture in Koreatown, where many elderly Koreans are still not used to using online platforms to monetize their resources.
“The program is designed to provide additional income for homeowners and diversification of businesses for entrepreneurs,” KYCC director Jong-ho Song said. “The pilot program is set to launch this summer.”
Meanwhile, Airbnb hosts took part in the press conference to explain the benefits of home-sharing.
“Airbnb is enriching my family’s life,” said Hollywood resident Inza Yates. “By home-sharing, I’m not only supporting my grandchildren with their tuition. I’m even donating money to charity to help underprivileged students.”
By Sooyeon Oh