“My dream came true thanks to Airbnb! I was able to go to New York,” says Ann-Laure, a young civil servant from Villeneuve-Saint-Georges, a suburb southeast of Paris.
Ann-Laure’s living room is full of objects that remind her of New York: from coasters to wall pictures and a Captain America teddy bear.
Ann-Laure grew up in Villeneuve-Saint-Georges, where she bought a one-bedroom apartment in an old house five years ago. In 2013, Ann-Laure wanted to visit the city of her dreams. “I heard about Airbnb when I looked on the internet for a way to rent my apartment for three weeks.” A few days later, Ann-Laure stayed in an Airbnb apartment in Queens, while a Canadian guest stayed in her apartment. “He needed to spend one month to work in Paris. It really helped me pay the accommodation in New York.”
Ann-Laure rents her apartment to people who work in the Orly-Rungis cluster, or who want to spend the weekend in Paris, but can’t afford to stay in a more central neighborhood.
“All our guests are very happy to have a garden with a panoramic view on Paris .” You can even see The Eiffel tower from her window. “On Bastille Day, there are plenty of fireworks, it’s a beautiful view.”
Airbnb enables Ann-Laure to go on holidays and meet new people. For example, Ann-Laure rented her apartment while she was out of the city to attend a concert in Clermont-Ferrand. “I rented my room to a very nice couple. They were lovely and we chatted a lot. They even drove me to get dinner when it was raining.”
Ann-Laure wants French policymakers to understand that Airbnb allows people like her to live better, to travel, and to meet new friends. “They should not make it administratively burdensome and complicated.”