Airbnb forecasts upbeat revenue as international travel rebounds

By Priyamvada C and Doyinsola Oladipo

(Reuters) -Airbnb forecast third-quarter revenue above market estimates on Thursday, but industry fears of softening U.S. domestic demand sent the vacation rental firm’s shares down 1.2% in after-hours trading.

The San Francisco-based company forecast quarterly revenue between $3.3 billion and $3.4 billion, ahead of analysts’ average estimate of $3.22 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

The company expects to gain from a rebound in urban and international travel but firms with significant U.S. exposure are losing domestic business as more consumers opt for vacations abroad.

Airbnb, which receives a majority of its revenue from outside the United States, said global cross-border bookings rose 16% in the second quarter from a year earlier and more guests were returning to cities, with urban nights booked increasing by 13% year-over-year.

“We continue to see signs of travelers returning to cities, historically one of the strongest areas of our business,” the company said.

However, its average daily rate (ADR) globally rose just 1% to $166, as the company said it was looking to moderate price hikes for consumers. Daily rates in North America decreased 1%.

The demand for domestic hotels has been flat in the United States as pandemic restrictions ease and a strong U.S. dollar encourages consumers to book flights and stays overseas, according to analysts.

But short-term rental company Airbnb, which has a large presence in cities, said it saw an acceleration in the total growth of nights booked from the first to second quarters in North America.

“I think that was telling, just the strength and resiliency of the North American consumer and we’re continuing to see that strength lead into Q3,” said Airbnb CFO David Stephenson on a call with investors.

Airbnb’s second-quarter revenue rose 18.1% to $2.48 billion, ahead of analysts’ estimates of $2.42 billion.

Gross bookings rose 13% to $19.1 billion, in line with expectations.

The short-term rental company reported a profit of 98 cents per share, compared with estimates of 78 cents.

Online travel agency Booking Holdings’ shares rose 10.25% in extended trading after the company raised its annual forecast as it benefits from international travel demand to Europe.

(Reporting by Priyamvada C in Bengaluru and Doyinsola Oladipo in New York; Editing by Pooja Desai, Maju Samuel and Devika Syamnath)