Accommodation still available

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Coming soon . . . Ed Sheeran is playing at Forsyth Barr Stadium on March 29 and 31 and April 1. PHOTO: STAR FILES

Despite an estimated 60,000 people expected to visit Dunedin during Easter, plenty of accommodation is still available in the city, providers say.

Coinciding with the holiday weekend will be three concerts by British musician Ed Sheeran, who is playing at Forsyth Barr Stadium on March 29 and 31 and April 1.

Otago Motel Association executive member Michael Young, who owns 858 on George Street, said accommodation was still available at the city’s motels over the weekend, as many people had booked before they secured concert tickets and ended up changing their bookings.

“As soon as word came out people were booking up left, right and centre and then when they struggled to find tickets they were cancelling, changing their room numbers etc.

“That’s always the case with these events.”

Mr Young said within half an hour to an hour of the news of the concert breaking nationally, people were calling and emailing to book accommodation.

It was “haywire” on the morning the concert was announced, Mr Young said.

Despite the “mad rush” rooms were still available for guests.

“I think it’s just a matter of getting in touch with the various operators and just giving them a call.”

If one motel was booked, the staff could refer guests to another one, he said.

“Dunedin is a nice, friendly town . . . The people down here are always willing to help people find accommodation.”

Look After Me website managing director Julia Charity said since The Star published an article on her “Sharin for Sheeran” campaign in January, she had signed up 52 home owners, many of whom had bookings. A further 52 homes were waiting to be processed.

About 130 people were still on the waiting list for accommodation and new inquiries were arriving every day, she said.

She hoped to sign up 100 home owners, which equated to about 200-300 rooms.

Airbnb country manager Sam McDonagh said before the concert was a great time for Dunedin residents to list their homes on the website.

“Ahead of an event like the Ed Sheeran concert[s] . . . there’s never been a better time to list their home on Airbnb, whether to share a room or to list their entire home.”

Mr McDonagh said there were almost 1000 Dunedin listings on the website at present and Dunedin people were among the highest-rated hosts.

In the past 12 months, 44,000 guests had stayed in an Airbnb in Dunedin and hosts had made about $4100 a year, he said.

CHANCE TO WIN
British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran will bring his Divide world tour to Dunedin later this month.

His three Dunedin concerts are part of the 205 shows he will play worldwide.

The tour officially began on March 16, 2017, and will end on November 10.

The Star has two standing tickets to Ed Sheeran’s April 1 show at Forsyth Barr Stadium to give away.

To enter, answer the following question: How many shows will Ed Sheeran play in Dunedin?

Send your answer by email to competitions@thestar.co.nz with the words ‘Ed Sheeran competition’ in the subject line.

Include your name and daytime phone number. The competition will close on Friday, March 23.

– Tickets courtesy of Airbnb.