Airbnb is quickly becoming the preferred boarding option for tech- and budget-savvy travelers around the world. The service allows people to lease or rent short-term lodging, including holiday cottages, apartments, homestays, hostel beds, or hotel rooms. The company also launched a new program which allows individual to participate in or facilitate experience related to tourism, such as walking tours. The company itself does not own any real estate or conduct tours; it is simply a broker that receives percentage service fees from gig economy participants. Currently, Aidbnb has over 5 million lodging listings in 81,000 cities and 191 countries. It has facilitated over 300 million check-ins.
Airbnb has a very easy sign-in process. Users, both hosts and gusts, need to show their ID and add their profile picture to the site. They must also verify their phone number, email, or home address. All users can write and receive reviews—in fact, each lodger has their own review profile that only hosts can see. To find the perfect accommodations, search by location, check-in, and check-out dates. Typically, guests are required to pay a non-refundable fee of 6- to 12 percent based on the size of their reservation.
If this sounds like an excellent way to efficiently and cheaply travel the world, you’re right. You have the opportunity to meet a local host and ask questions about the area. If, however, this sounds like a huge safety risk, don’t worry—Airbnb has taken certain precautions to protect both its guests and hosts. All members must complete a profile and upload photos, and hosts have the ability to leave references and reputation reports for guests. Additionally, Airbnb recommends that hosts obtain insurance to cover damages caused by guests, but the company also offers secondary insurance (known as its “host guarantee”). All hosts can also require their prospective gusts to obtain Verified IDs before booking, meaning they must scan a government-issued ID.
Airbnb is available nearly anywhere you’d want to visit. With unique opportunities across the world, users can book lodging for cheap, at the last minute, or request special tours to fully experience their destination.