Locals Cash in on College Bowl Games with Airbnb

Scott Shatford | June 6, 2015

Residents of the 30-plus cities hosting college bowl games this year are cashing in on their homes by renting them out to traveling football fans via Airbnb short-term rentals. With one million listings in over 34,000 cities around the globe, Airbnb has created the largest and most trusted platform for converting your home into an instant rental property. Using Airbnb, anyone with an Internet connection can compete for the same tourist dollars that the large hotel chains fight for.

The number of available Airbnb short-term rentals, as well as the demand that exists for them during this year’s big games varies significantly by city. Two of the biggest bowl games, the Rose Bowl and the Sugar Bowl, provide some of the most interesting insights into the popularity of Airbnb.


New Orleans

New Orleans, which hosts the Sugar Bowl, has over 869 homes currently listed on Airbnb. The accompanying demand is sky-high, with 94% of these homes already booked for the big game. The median price for the remaining properties is $350 per night for the eve of the big game. The influx of football fans coupled with heavy holiday travel has created a frenzy of bookings for New Orleans vacation rentals.



Pasadena, California hosts the Rose Bowl and Rose Parade on New Year’s Day and is already seeing a significant spike in demand for January 1st, with 79% of available Airbnb short-term rentals already reserved. There are only 86 total listings in the Pasadena area, but homes close to the Rose Bowl are currently fetching over $1,000 Pasadena Airbnb Listing Prices from Airdnaper night. The potential to make great money on Airbnb is not limited to these popular tourist destinations. In advance of this year’s college football bowl games, Everbooked and AirDNA.co partnered together to crunch the numbers and show how big the Airbnb opportunity is in every city hosting a college bowl game this season.
college football bowl game airbnb pricing and occupancy
Per the above table, the median price for an Airbnb is over $200/night in many of the bowl game cities on the night of the event. In several cases, occupancy rates are already 80% or more during the night of the game which gives new hosts an opportunity to capture last-minute fans.

Many people can pay their entire month’s mortgage by renting their place for a long weekend.  AirDNA is the perfect tool to use to find what weekends have the highest vacation rental demand in over 4,000 cities worldwide. Many entrepreneurial individuals are finding these highly profitable times of year and renting their primary residences only during peak times.

“Once you’re a host, pricing your property to meet demand is one of the most important things you can do,” said David Ordal, CEO of Everbooked. “Our dynamic pricing engine can help hosts figure out what they should charge for game day, as well as every other day of the year. We examine dozens of factors to help properly price your listing, including area hotels, events, seasonal trends and even competition from other Airbnb hosts.


Tips for renting your place during the big game:

Set your price at double what you’d pay for it.

If you feel your home could normally fetch $100 a night, start at $200 and then begin reducing it by five percent a day until it gets booked. There is nothing worse than getting booked immediately only to kick yourself later on thinking about the hundreds of dollars you may have missed out on.


Mention the Big Game in Your Headline

Don’t start off your listing title with where you are located or how many bedrooms your place has. Instead, catch your audience’s attention by mentioning the big game. “Sweet Sun Bowl Headquarters” or “Amazing Rose Bowl Retreat,” are a few good examples that are likely to catch the eye of bowl game travelers. Getting views are the name of the game and these targeted headlines are sure to capture the attention of your intended audience.


Set a 4-night Minimum Stay

This will help deter the one-night party animal and make sure you are maximizing your property’s value. An added benefit is that there is typically a positive correlation between total booking cost and guest quality. The more people can afford to pay the more trustworthy and respectful they typically area.

For dozens of other tips and tricks to maximizing the value of your Airbnb short-term rentals join the AirDNA Insider Club and instantly receive, The Airbnb Expert’s Playbook: Secrets of a Six-Figure Rentalpreneur.

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