Airbnb Offers Free Rentals to the Victims of Hurricane Matthew

Airbnb Hurricane Matthew

Airbnb offers free rentals program

The government ordered millions of residents in the southeastern U.S to vacate their places due to the dangerous hurricane have approached the city. The home sharing platform, Airbnb has decided to help the people whose houses were affected by the dangerous storm.

While, Hurricane Matthew moved to Florida’ east coast before affecting the regions of Georgia and South California. Though the storm has weakened, the impacts it created takes days to recover and it has left millions of people without power.

The storm has threatened the lives of millions of people who live I and around the coastline. So, Airbnb has decided to implement its disaster response program, which allows the volunteers to keep their gates open for the people who lost their homes in the flood. Airbnb has decided to provide free of cost accommodation for the people in need.

More than 3000 listings were activated in the relief program across the world. Even the full villa is available for free of cost in some areas. In addition to Airbnb, many such similar companies have come up with the idea to help the people who lost their homes and properties in the flood. Comfy Couch has decided to offer any type of accommodation needed.

Nick Shapiro, the spokesperson of Airbnb said that, the company encourages the hosts in the safe areas to list the available spaces such as the homes or rooms in the platform, in order to help the increasing number of people who leave their places to safeguard their lives. This was the first dangerous hurricane threat in the area that has been seen over the years. The company has hopes that, they can be the small part in making the rescue process easier for the residents and also their families. And the company has assured that, they will help the people who are affected by the flood with the best of their ability.

When the hurricane Sandy affected the New York City in 2012, about 1000 hosts opened their homes for the people of the affected by the hurricane for the free of cost.

Let’s have a look at the hurricane Matthew in depth

Hurricane Matthew was very powerful and a deadly cyclone. It was powerful after the hurricane Felix in 2007. It originated as a tropical wave and then developed into a tropical storm. It affected the 56km range starting from St. Louisa. It had the high intensification when it reached the Caribbean Sea. Within a week Matthew became the hurricane with 310km from northeast of Curacao and in the next day it achieved the category five intensity. It was the lowest latitude storm with this intensity in the Atlantic Basin. While moving towards north of the Greater Antilles, Matthew weakened slightly.

The cyclone then made a move to the Gulf of Gonave and it was marked a category 4 hurricane. The interaction of the land made the cyclone got weakened to the category 3 hurricane. When Matthew started to move from Cuba to Bahamas it got back its category 4. It then made its third landfall in Grand Bahamas that is 24km in west-northwest of Freeport. The cyclone then moved to the United States within the three days. Then the cyclone gradually started to weaken before making its forth and the final landfall. Matthew then merged with the Atlantic in the short period of its final landfall, before ending up; it turned into the extra tropical cyclone and then turned off.

Preparations for the hurricane Matthew

In Lesser Antilles and South America

When the country started to know that the Matthew has started becoming the tropical cyclone, the airline company LIAT has started to cancel the flights which were about to fly across the Windward islands. Many schools, colleges and businesses were closed for some days. Even two of the airports in St. Louisa were closed for one day. Shelters were opened across the island in order to safeguard the people. The government of the Windward Islands issued the tropical storm warnings, for foresight of the fierce winds.

There was the local sports tournament in the Aruba and they got canceled. The government has ordered the officials to close the beaches in the peninsula region.

In Jamaica

Matthew has caused a significant threat to Jamaica, so the government ordered the officials to clear the fishermen at the banks and to arrange facilities for them to move to the main city. The prime minister of Jamaica, Mr. Andrew Holness, conducted the emergency meeting regarding the dangerous hurricane, and to make the government alert and to be aware of the happenings in the country.

First, the hurricane alert was given to the country. Later, the alert became the warning. 60 shelters were placed by the officials of the Trelawny parish. Mostly all the supermarkets were filled with the people seeking for the basic food items. About the hundred females were relocated from St. Catherin parish to another parish in Kingston. The toll fees were collected before the arrival of the Matthew. Sangster international airport and the Norman Manley international airport were suspended for a day.

Schools and the government offices were off for some days. More than 900 shelters were put up on Jamaica. The urban transit company provided buses to transport people from Kingston to the national arena. Andrew Holness, the prime minister of Jamaica, has warned the residents of the Jamaica, to be aware of the Matthew, because it will more dangerous than the hurricane Gilbert, which ruined the country in 1988.

In Haiti

Following Jamaica, the storm watch was given to the people of Haiti that is the eastward shift of the Matthews. The warning thrilled the entire country. People who were living in the islands of the Haiti were moved to the mainland in the city. The nation also has the chance to get affected by the heavy rainfall. In the southeastern coast of the nation the rain falls were expected to between 38 and 64cms, and in the peaks the rainfall was predicted to be around 100cm.

The government conducted meetings with the officials regarding the storm preparations. Radio France international said that, Haiti does not have the capability to meet the large scale disaster. Only 576 shelters were created all over the country, in which 90,000 people can stay in those shelters.

The storm warning was raised in Dominance Republic, Cuba, Bahamas and United States.


The two states, Florida and North Carolina were declared a state of emergency. Both the state governors requested the people living along the coasts to move to the city. The governor of Georgia also requested the people to be safe, and to be aware of the arriving of the Mathews.

Steps taken by Airbnb

However, Airbnb has opened its disaster response program for the people of South California and Florida. They have planned to save the maximum number of people as they can. About two million people were suffering in these two states due to hurricane Matthew.

At the beginning of this stage, about two dozen of Airbnb properties were provided to make the people stay in their spaces, all the spaces were provided for free of cost. This is one of the best activities taken by Airbnb.

Airbnb provides the opportunity to make use of the disaster response program at the times of need. The company is taking steps to collaborate with agencies like FEMA across the globe.


Article Author Details

Anand Rajendran

Anand Rajendran is the Co-Founder and CEO of Snoota. He is a writer and coffee lover. He has is a graduate in Computer Science and Post Graduate in Entrepreneurship and leadership from Ulyanovsk State University, Russia. He is a passionate blogger & SEO Specialist. Snoota is a software products development company which has launched Stayal Script which is a Airbnb Clone Script with Android and iOS apps.