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Cancun & Mexican Caribbean Hotels See Surge In Bookings As Airbnb Prices Skyrocket

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Airbnb has traditionally been viewed as a cost-effective alternative to the eye-watering prices of Cancun’s luxurious all-inclusives.

Despite their costly reputation, Cancun resorts are seeing a surge in bookings as online rental prices skyrocket due to new regulations.

cancun resort with people

Although the dramatic shift is being felt across the Mexican Caribbean, it’s most evident in Cancun, where average rates have risen by as much as 300% in certain locations compared to just several years ago.

Even as more online rentals become available, travelers are thinking twice about whether to book one or not. With that in mind, here’s the latest on Airbnb prices in Cancun.

Person Using Airbnb App

Sharp Rise In Nightly Rates Sees Hotel Uptick In Hotel Bookings

Poor regulation, a thriving informal economy, and low wages are just several factors that have contributed to Cancun’s booming online rental market in the past several years. 

Consequently, apps like Airbnb have soared in popularity, offering cheaper rates and more flexibility compared to prices charged by most resorts. But in 2023, that situation is quickly changing as new laws come into effect that aim to tightly regulate rentals and increase taxation.

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Airbnb owners are now obliged to pay many of the same taxes that hotels do, not to mention completely overhaul issues relating to safety and hygiene. And as costs add up, the bill is being passed on to travelers, who are now paying a considerably higher price for their online rental. 

In addition, the Mexican Caribbean is skyrocketing in popularity. This is driving the prices of Airbnbs to levels previously unknown.

According to the latest reports, the average price of Airbnbs has risen by as much as 300% during the last five years, and Cancun travelers are now splurging up to $180 per night on average for an online rental in the sun-soaked destination.

And unlike an all-inclusive resort, that rate doesn’t include services like daily cleaning, complimentary breakfast, and a whole host of other perks and amenities. 

Calm view from the resort pool in a Cancun property

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, up to a third of all Mexican Caribbean travelers stayed in an online rental, but that figure is expected to drop considerably this year. 

In addition to rising prices, many travelers prefer the convenience and simplicity of an all-inclusive resort. From round-trip airport transfers to on-site entertainment, resorts provide a hassle-free and safe vacation experience for millions of travelers.

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Safety is another major concern that could be behind the recent rise in resort bookings. Offering around-the-clock security and utmost privacy, few online rentals can compete with Cancun’s massive properties when it comes to ensuring guests’ safety during their stay.

With the peak of the summer season just about to start, Cancun resorts are reporting occupancy rates of nearly 73% – an impressive figure considering summer is typically one of the quietest times in the resort destination. 

Beautiful Mexican Caribbean Beach

Airbnbs Can Still Be A Good Choice

Despite rising prices, online rentals are still a great option for some travel styles. Airbnbs can be a cost-effective option for longer stays, such as for digital nomads or backpackers, who can opt for properties further away from busy touristy hubs.

Some Airbnbs also offer amazing views and convenient locations close to nature, downtown areas, or other noteworthy sites. That said, travelers should pay close attention to booking an online rental, with reports of scams on the rise.

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There are several crucial safety trips travelers should follow when booking an online rental. Officials recently launched a new online security campaign called ‘Verify and Travel’, urging visitors to only book through official channels and apps.

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