Hurricane Florence: Airbnb, hotels are working to provide free shelter for refugees, aid workers



Hurricane Florence is downgraded to a Category 2 hurricane

Fox News’ Leland Vittert reports from Atlantic Beach, North Carolina

As Hurricane Florence, the barrels in the direction of the south-east of the United States, several Airbnbs and hotels are going the extra mile to house and accommodate refugees and aid workers.

The Category 2 storm is expected to bring catastrophic flooding, potentially life-threatening storm surges, tropical storm wind force, and even tornadoes along the path.

More than 10 million people in south Carolina, Virginia and the surrounding region, were under hurricane watches or warnings Thursday. Hundreds of thousands are ordered to evacuate.

VIDEO UPDATE: the Director of the Weather Prediction Center describes what you can expect with #HurricaneFlorence…”Precipitation forecast of Hurricane Florence rivals state records”

— NWS (@NWS) September 12, 2018

To that end, Airbnb has launched the Open Houses Programme “displaced neighbours and the emergency services” a safe place to stay through the worst of the storm.

Hosts in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia have opened their houses for the affected individuals, stay, free, by Jan. 1.


“It allows our hosts to offer their space free of charge for everyone who have been displaced or need to evacuate, or is the implementation in the field in order to help with the relief efforts,” Kim Rubey, global head of social impact and philanthropy at Airbnb, told WTOP.

Also, hotels in the region where Hurricane Florence is expected that the strike have waived the cancellation fee and allow pets to stay for free.

Marriot Hotels and the Intercontinental Hotel Group (whose portfolio consists of Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Kimpton) have waived the cancellation fee and relax pet keep the rules in the Southeast of the USA Today reports. Many smaller, local inns through the area are also following suit, according to the outlet.


“We see a large increase in the demand and do our best for the guests and employees that are affected along the coast,” Maggie Giddens, a G6 Hospitality director, told the newspaper USA Today. “Now we are all expected limited availability in the Carolina’s, after a mandatory evacuation was reported in areas of South-Carolina, where we have multiple locations.”

Thousands of flights to, postponed or cancelled before the storm.

Florence is expected to creep near or along the coast of south Carolina until Friday, may delay the achievement of a technical land in sight. The barn is probably the fitting of the region with long lasting rain, wind and swell, the dumping of 20 to 30 mm of rain on both Carolina’s for swirling about the Appalachian Mountains.

Catastrophic floods and even tornadoes are expected in southeastern Virginia and eastern North Carolina.

Fox News’ Amy Place, Lucia I. Suarez Sang, Senior Meteorologist, Janice Dean and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Janine Puhak is an editor for Fox News Lifestyle. Follow her on Twitter via @JaninePuhak

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