Airbnb vacation rental apartment & home rentals certainly led the charge in the market when it first launched in 2008. Yet they have encountered many road bumps over the years – most notably safety issues and inconsistency of product – will they continue to lead the pack?
“Airbnb is an American company which operates an online marketplace and hospitality service for people to lease or rent short-term lodging including holiday cottages, apartments, homestays, hostel beds, or hotel rooms, to participate in or facilitate experiences related to tourism such as walking tours, and to make reservations at restaurants. The company does not own any real estate or conduct tours; it is a broker which receives percentage service fees in conjunction with every booking. The company has over 5 million lodging listings in 81,000 cities and 191 countries and has facilitated over 300 million check-ins.”
I have stayed at many, many Airbnb’s over the years, from country houses to city apartments. At times I was pleasantly surprised, and other times, uncomfortable buy the state of the product. However, I have become savvier over the years and know what to look for in their listing. Certainly there is a wide range of listings, and when it comes to vacations, I tend to look for homes that are clearly under management (as in one person is looking after a collection of listings for the sole purpose of vacation rentals). These are usually the cleanest and most modern of the bunch. I have also personally used it, listing my old apartment while on long stretches, also to great results, but again….I vetted very, very well.
I will continue to use it, and I like supporting others out there sharing their homes, however in recent year’s I have turned to higher end companies that inspect all of their homes, only except some, and use their own management system, much like a concierge service (such as One Fine Stay or Plum Guide or Sonder Stays)
Author: Carrie Mitchell
Carrie A. Mitchell is the founder of L’Aventure Travel, the host of the Suitcase Sojourn Podcast, and author of the children’s travel book “To Be We”. Carrie is a global travel and hospitality expert who works with publications, brands and entertainment outlets on a number of travel related projects, from marketing consulting to editorial coverage to hosting & producing content for the web, TV and podcasts. She is always seeking to learn from people and places around the world, and share through her cultural exploration (40+ countries and counting)