Airbnb is a disrupter. No, they were not the first home rental website, but they were just the first to execute the idea well digitally. Airbnb has created an online platform that takes all the hassle out of finding accommodations. Allowing for a shift in the rental and hotel industry, by creating a peer to peer rental market, that now boasts over 2,000,000 listing worldwide. Today, anyone with an extra room can become a host and start renting out their space. No longer are travelers beholding to a small rental market and expensive hotels. You now have the freedom to travel and explore like a local, or as the Airbnb ads say “Don’t go there, live there”…
Airbnb, has become one of my most used apps over the last few years. Not only are they an interesting technology company to watch, the are one of the most useful and impactful ones in recent years. Putting aside my nerdy tech love affair… Here is why I love Airbnb and use it constantly when planning my next vacation.
1. Real-time Availability
Ever find the perfect house for your trip only to find out it’s not actually available. With Airbnb what you see is what you get. Search for specific dates what is returned is ONLY what properties are actually available for those dates. Traditional, rental sites do not have real-time availability dates leaving you messaging back and forth people trying to figure out if the dates you want are actually available
2. Real-time Pricing
– Once you have locked in the available spaces for your dates its time to figure out your pricing options. Airbnb offers real-time pricing, showing you all fees & taxes in the final price when searching! Yes, I’m harping on VRBO/HomeAway but the problem… no more like the Achille’s heal of these sites is the lack of real-time pricing. Trying to book a house in Telluride, Colorado is tricky. Prices fluctuate almost weekly to accommodate for the festival crowds in summer. VRBO/HomeAway can only give an average’s night cost of the time of year you’re looking to book. Not taking into account price increases for certain holidays and weekends. Leaving you unsure of the total price of the property.
Communication inside the app and on the .com is super easy. Airbnb has the advantage of being a totally online platform so that all if it users from the renter to the host know that the all transaction takes place online and online only. No phone calls needed.
I want a house in, the french quarter, that sleeps 10 on these days, that allows pets and has a pool – DONE. From my experience with other rental companies, these “Filters” are vague and often return results that don’t really fit. Each space on Airbnb comes with a thorough description of the space, beautiful imagery, an accurate bed count, list of amenities and often a little guide to the area you are headed too.
5. Easy of Use
By reading my other points you have picked up on UX (User Experience) being huge for me. Airbnb is EASY. it’s easy to search, easy to use and easy to understand. If User experience is king (and it is) that is why Airbnb is kicking ass over traditional rental companies.
6. The App
More than once I have been in a bind to find a place last minute and the Airbnb app has saved me. Especially want Instabook which allows you to instantly book a place without any back and forth with the host. Just pay and go check in!
I have had some pretty amazing Airbnb’s around Colorado and as we plan our trips for 2017 Airbnb is the first place we look for accommodations. Have you tried Airbnb? Any favorite places you have stayed?