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Business and Economy

Airbnb Bookings Show Bar Harbor Is A Popular Thanksgiving Destination

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Robert F. Bukaty
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Associated Press file
In this July 1, 1999 file photo, a horse and rider crosses the Waterfall Bridge on the Sargent Mountain carriage road at Acadia National Park on Mt. Desert Island, near Bar Harbor, Maine.

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Maine, the short-term rental company Airbnb says Bar Harbor is a top trending destination for those looking to travel over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Airbnb spokesperson Liz Debold Fusco says the most popular destinations are typically places where people can enjoy nature.

“Be able to be outdoors and socially distant while still celebrating this unprecedented holiday with their families,” she says.

Fusco says while the company does provide safety information, it’s ultimately up to travelers and owners to follow local rules.

“I think that if you were to look at the vast majority of listings across Maine you can see many hosts who are already ensuring that guests are following public health guidance. I can see many listings where hosts were reminding guests that they needed to quarantine,” she says. “It’s up to our community to follow any local guidelines, but we’ve created a repository and resource center that sort of captures all relevant COVID-19 guidelines for our community and ensure that they have an easy reference point around the guidelines that could be applied to them.”

Fusco says Airbnb requires property owners and renters to attest to a safety protocol.

But as travelers set their sights on Bar Harbor, the Bangor Daily News is reporting that several local restaurants have temporarily closed after employees came into possible contact with someone with COVID-19.

Maine has recently delayed opening bars and tasting rooms and strengthened its masking policy. Travelers from New York, Connecticut and New Jersey are also required to be tested and quarantine upon arrival.