In this monthly piece, I’m going to focus on the fun and interesting news coming out about Airbnb. I’ll mostly be ignoring news from governments and special-interest groups about regulation, litigation, taxes, housing crisis, etc. This post is Airbnb news for the 4th quarter of 2018.
Airbnb’s search is not static. The results used to be based on a manual set of factors, but nowadays it’s at least partially based on AI and 195 factors. I found this quote interesting:
“Long views of listings seemed to correlate with bookings in testing, but when a model that simultaneously predicted the probability of booking and long view times was deployed online, it didn’t result in an uptick. The team speculates that long views could be driven by a variety of factors such as high-end but high-priced listings, listings with long descriptions that are difficult to parse, or extremely unique and “sometimes humorous” listings, among other reasons.”
However, one big and missing factor (at least, it’s not talked about) is the actual conversation between the guest and the host, pre-reservation. For me, this matters just as much as anything. I may have narrowed it down to a particular area within a city, but I really do not know exactly where I want to stay as if I was a local familiar with the inidivudla streets. I rely on a conversation to understand the service I can expect.
Here is a link to the study from the article: https://arxiv.org/pdf/1810.09591.pdf
If you follow me, you already know this has been assumed.
Hostmaker, a large Airbnb property management company, has started to do vacation rental interior design in select cities.
The biggest takeaway: ensure it’s comfortable. Looking nice means nothing, if it’s not comfortable. Check out my YouTube review of the living room of my Medellin, Colombia Airbnb for an example of a nice looking, but uncomfortable interior design job.
The goal of interior design: to stand out and be comfortable.
They make an interesting point of making it Instagrammable. Create a feature in your home and let the guest know how they can tag it. Check it out…
Too cool not to share! This is probably the most remote Airbnb you will ever find: “You land in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia’s capital, hop in a propeller plane to the Taiga forest of northern Mongolia, and trade flight for a 4×4 once you arrive at the forest’s edge. Then, when the roads disappear, you’re met not with horses, but with reindeer, which will cart you three hours to your final destination.”
Should I book this and make a video of my experience? Do you know of an even more remote Airbnb?
Always good to know the opposite perspective. Nothing new on this list, but give it a look. Do they seem accurate to you?
The only one I was to call out is number six. I would strongly argue less repairs and maintenance with a vacation rental, though at first seems counter-intuitive. A short-term renter is mostly out of your house, especially for 3-4 day vacations where a long-term tenant spends much more time in your space plus is more likely to use the kitchen.
I would love to read your comments about this news or new stuff not covered! This was Airbnb news for the 4th quarter of 2018.
Also published on Medium.