If you’re just now exploring your accommodations options for trips into the Coachella Valley for upcoming events like the Coachella Festival or Stagecoach, expect the pickings to be thin, and quite expensive.
Unless, you zero in on the little east valley city of Coachella. Yes, the one city in the region that has no hotels to its name. However, it does boast more than 100 vacation rental options on Airbnb alone.
One of the biggest tourism events happening in the valley takes the stage this weekend and next. And here’s what the vacation rental availability in Coachella on Airbnb looks like for the second weekend of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival: An entire home goes for about $1,500 a day, while a single room in someone’s house will generally set you back $200 to $300 a night.
Genaro Delgado and his wife Diane have a four-bedroom house in Coachella, complete with pool, spa, firepit and other amenities. The couple rents out the home to vacationers.
“Initially, we were not quite sure how everything would work out with our vacation rental,” said Genaro Delgado, a teacher with the Coachella Valley Unified School District. “We knew we would get booked for the music festivals, but we were unsure as to how we would fare other months.”
The Delgados charge about $1,000 a night, with a four-night minimum for their home during festival weekends.
The availability of vacation rentals in Coachella came my way when I learned the city will soon partner with Airbnb where the vacation rental listing platform will begin collecting the city’s 9 percent TOT rate from guests booking any of the vacation rentals operating within the city limits.
Coachella will join a list of more than 220 municipalities globally that have begun partnering with Airbnb to collect the required bed taxes on vacation rentals.
Coachella has for years not bothered to enforce its transient occupancy tax ordinance, if only because there was little need, since the city is not home to any hotels.
However, that changed in the east valley community when it experienced a growth spurt in the number of vacation rentals.
“We actually did not change our policy. We just started to enforce our ordinance last year when it came to our attention about how many short-term rentals where occurring in our community,” said Bill Pattison, interim city manager. And starting May 1, the city will begin its new partnership with Airbnb.
To date, Airbnb has remitted over $240 million in hotel, tourist and occupancy taxes to more than 275 cities and communities around the world, according to the company.
“Our community of hosts want to pay their fair share,” Marisa Moret, public policy manager for Airbnb, said in a statement. “Our hosts in Coachella are committed to being good neighbors and strengthening their community, while earning extra income year-round.”
Just the few short-term rentals in Coachella generated some $6,400 last year, said Pattison.
Airbnb has a similar agreement with Indio, where the company collects and remits TOT back to the city.
Hotel bed taxes have been a necessary and growing component of city finances in the Coachella Valley.
Some of the other valley cities with their sprawling luxury resorts and hundreds of vacation homes generated a range of $1.5 million in TOT collections in Desert Hot Springs to more than $25.7 million in Palm Springs during the 2015-16 fiscal year.