Rural Airbnbs in Kentucky bring in $27m in 2021

BARREN CO., Ky.- Many changes brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic may affect you still today. Including where, and how, you vacation!

“2021 was our best year ever in 16 years.”

In 2021, rural Airbnb hosts in Kentucky earned over $27 million, according to Airbnb. 

Barren County Airbnbs took in nearly $800,000. The Grand Victorian Inn is a popular Airbnb in Barren County, just a few minutes drive from Mammoth Cave National Park. 

The owner says during Covid, some people didn’t want to book a hotel and be near 60+ other guests. Her inn only has 11 rooms. 

“People have wanted a more intimate stay, not in a public hotel so the bed and breakfast associations have picked up on more nights,” said Grand Victorian Inn owner Karin Baldwin-Carroll.

Across the county, Hall Place also saw an increase in Airbnb stays during the pandemic. Staff credit it to how clean they kept their operation. 

“Part of that was Airbnb was really proactive in being like what are you doing to keep your guests safe. It’s a stringent cleaning policy where you’re cleaning before and after they leave, and you have to wait 24 hours between check-ins,” said Hall Place owner Sharla Emmers.

Another reason she said was because of the county’s lower Covid-19 numbers… and smaller population. 

“I think it’s because of the smaller numbers. And there’s things that smaller communities can offer that big cities just can’t,” said Emmers.

A silver lining to the pandemic for Airbnb owners.