xi's moments
Home | Society

Apartment owners cash in on upcoming holiday trips

By ZOU SHUO in Changsha | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-09-24 23:45

Holiday: Concern expressed over renting out apartments

The National Day holiday is around the corner, and those making last-minute plans to travel at that time are busy booking fast-disappearing hotel rooms in popular tourist destinations.

In a bid to cash in on this rush for rooms, social media users are flooding platforms with offers of apartments for rent just for the holiday week, at prices that are a fraction of what is being charged by hotels, many of which are sold out.

The hashtag, "Living in my home during the National Day holiday" is trending big time on social media platforms, with people living in popular tourist destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai, Xiamen in Fu­jian province and Changsha in Hunan province offering their extra rooms to travelers. The eight-day holiday starts on Friday, which marks Mid-Autumn Festival.

Experts said this novel way of sharing one's home not only means extra earnings for the homeowners, but also improves the reputation of the cities. However, they also warned that there are risks involved.

According to China State Railway Group, the country's railway operator, about 190 million passenger trips are expected to be made on the railway network from Wednesday through Oct 8, compared with 72 million trips during the same period in 2022 and 138 million in 2019.

On Xiaohongshu, a popular life­style-sharing platform, there are many posts by netizens offering to rent out their apartments during the holiday week. A post typically includes pictures and videos of the apartment, the time slot it is available for and its location.

Unlike hotels, those renting out their homes are not charging anything extra for cleaning the apartment while it is occupied, no contract or deal needs to be signed and the ID information of the renters is not necessarily required.

A 25-year-old man surnamed Cai in Xiamen has rented out his apartment to two women traveling to the city from Xi'an, Shaanxi province.

They will rent the 30-square-meter apartment at 200 yuan ($27) per night for seven days, while a hotel room can easily cost more than 500 yuan a night during that time, Cai said.

"It is the first time I am letting out my apartment during a holiday. I wanted to give it out to someone who will keep it clean," he said.

Cai and his would-be guests exchanged pictures of their ID cards and the women paid him 200 yuan as a deposit. He has given them the passkey to enter his apartment and will spend the holidays at his parents' house, also in Xiamen.

"There are no valuable items in my apartment, and after thorough examination of the guests' profiles, which suggest they are decent individuals, I made up my mind to give it a shot," he said.

A woman from Changsha advertised two spare rooms in her apartment only for female guests, as she will be using the main bedroom.

She is charging 188 yuan for the two rooms per day, and the rooms have been booked for all the available days.

Meanwhile, some netizens have expressed concern over this trend of renting out personal apartments.

"It is so unsafe. What if the people install a camera in your home or make it a complete mess," one asked while commenting on a post seeking tenants. Another said, "Won't you be afraid of people opening your computer and checking what's inside?"

Fu Jian, a lawyer at Henan Zejin Law Firm, said that as there is no written agreement being signed between homeowners and renters, and the ID information is not registered, it would be very difficult for the owner to safeguard his or her rights should a dispute occur.

Moreover, if there is a theft or an accident involving the guests during their stay in the apartment, the owner will more or less be held accountable, he said.

He advised owners to be aware of the rules and regulations before renting out their apartments, and added that renters should also choose carefully to avoid unnecessary risks.

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349