Thousands Are Booking Airbnbs in Ukraine — Not to Stay, But to Send Direct Aid


Travellers are flocking to Airbnb to book houses in Ukraine, but they aren’t exactly checking in. Instead, they’re using the booking platform as a way to send direct aid to Ukrainians.

Co-founder and CEO of Airbnb, Brian Chesky, took to Twitter to share that people have booked more than 61,000 nights in Ukrainian Airbnbs to help support hosts.

Chesky’s Twitter is filled with testimonials of grateful Ukrainians, who are in awe of the generosity they’re being shown from around the world.

“These days we do not have any income,” Ukrainian Airbnb host Ekaterina Martiusheva told American publication NPR. “We do not have any right to ask our country to help us, because all the country’s resources are for the war and for the victory.”

“It’s not just money, it’s the support and encouragement. We get these notes of people who are calling us brave, and it does feel great. It’s just amazing, really.”

Airbnb CEO Chesky also tweeted that Airbnb, in partnership with its nonprofit, Airbnb.org, will provide free, temporary housing for 100,000 refugees fleeing from Ukraine. They also announced they will be suspending operations in Belarus and Russia.

Sara Garcia is one of the many who’s helped Ukrainians. She shared in the Facebook Group North Sydney Living that she was inspired by a friend to book a private house in Kyiv for the whole month of June and that she’d told the host to use the money for her family and the community.

Others have tweeted they booked multiple Airbnb spots across Ukraine, and are also asking people to consider purchasing digital art from Ukrainian creators off platforms such as Etsy.

You can get involved by booking an Airbnb in Ukraine here. And we’ve listed all the other ways you can help Ukraine here.

This article originally appeared on Thrillist.

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