Work with Airbnb: A good strategy for hotels?

Airbnb logo, website, real estate, rentals_8959252_ver1.0_1280_720.JPG

Just a few weeks after it opened its platform to hotels, Airbnb is wasting no time in launching an ad campaign challenging OTAs and the high commissions for hotels.

The ad asks hoteliers to consider Airbnb as a means to reduce reliance on the ‘big OTAs.’ 

The company has touted its much lower commission structure, anywhere from 3% to 5%, as a key benefit for hotels. And of course, this lower commission structure certainly threatens to upend the business model of the OTA incumbents.

Other features of Airbnb’s hotel offering include no contracts, ability to differentiate hotels from rooms/whole homes on Airbnb search, and access to Airbnb’s global demand generation engine. The company also promised, “new tools coming soon.”

This year, Airbnb is making a series of changes that will help work better with hospitality partners and make it easier to connect with the community of guests that hail from 191 countries around the world. Airbnb is for everyone, including professional hospitality providers that offer unique spaces and personal hospitality to the Airbnb community.

The company is committed to providing the highest-quality services at a fair price and continuing to grow. To date, there have been over 300 million guest arrivals in Airbnb listings around the world and more than 1 billion annual guests are estimated by 2028. While recent data from the US Department of Commerce shows that travel to the United States by international guests has decreased, the number of guests from other countries using Airbnb to visit the United States materially accelerated, with the number of international arrivals growing more than 30 percent, year-over-year. When combined with the ongoing robust domestic momentum, the overall growth in the US is significantly higher. Millennials continue to use Airbnb when planning their travel and this platform can be a powerful way to reach these consumers.

Going forward, here are some of the resources Airbnb offers include:

  • New ways to help rooms stand out. Airbnb will add four new property types to the platform – Vacation Home, Unique Space, B&B and Boutique. With this change, hoteliers will be able to easily distinguish their rooms from other listings and guests will be able to more easily find the space they are looking for.
  • Lower fees. Airbnb offers lower fees compared to online travel agencies (OTAs) that may charge commissions of up to 30 percent.
  • No long-term contracts. Hotels have full control over when your inventory appears on Airbnb and there is no competition against big chain hotels on Airbnb.
  • Guests from around the world. Sharing  rooms on Airbnb gives the access to the global community of guests from more than 191 countries.
  • New tools coming soon. Later this year, Airbnb will also recognize its best guests with a new guest membership program offering benefits across the entire trip and will update more tools to help hotels manage their inventory better.

Airbnb look for hosts who provide personal hospitality to guests and things like locally relevant or unique amenities and local maps with personalized recommendations. The full criteria are available here.

Read more: Airbnb and OTAs: The battle officially starts?