Why Airbnb is Not a Threat for B&Bs and Small Hotels

Airbnb is the travel sharing site that has had a big impact on the industry — but small accommodation providers do not have to be intimidated.

The company, which allows users to rent residential properties from people in nearly every destination for an affordable price, does not see itself as a competitor to small hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Here’s why.

Airbnb says it’s good for the travel industry

Airbnb sees itself as a complementary entity that can work with the hotel industry to spur growth and promote travel experiences.

Airbnb asserts that the travel industry as a whole has grown by more than 7% since it was founded.

Not only are there more people traveling as a result of Airbnb, these same travelers are staying longer once they arrive in their destination. More than 17% of those who book via Airbnb stay for longer than 30 days. Around 60% of Airbnb travelers stay for longer than seven days.

Airbnb serves a different type of traveler

This is because it’s catering to a different market – there are types of travel experiences where a hotel is a better option than a home rental in an urban or suburban area. It prioritizes the local experience for its travelers, while hotels are more apt to appeal to those looking for luxury and convenience.

Rather than booking a room in the heart of a tourist destination, Airbnb travelers prefer to book in a local neighborhood where they can immerse themselves in the local flavor and culture.

They want a ‘home away from home’ with a full kitchen, which increases the comfort and affordability of their trip.

Airbnb wants to pay taxes

Airbnb wants to play fair and pay the same types of taxes and fees that hotels from across the world are required to pay.

Some proof:

  • They’ve signed more than 200 tax agreements to ensure that this happens.
  • They’ve already remitted more than $100 million in taxes.

Airbnb may partner with accommodation providers on cross-promotions

Cross-promoting services is a good way to generate additional revenue from the increase in travelers:

  • Small accommodation providers can offer laundry services, housekeeping and amenities to Airbnb travelers who want more out of their experience.
  • Airbnb travelers are inspired by interesting local experiences. Small hotel operators can offer cooking classes, tours, and local guidebooks to benefit from these travelers.

Airbnb, as a company, is open to partnerships with local hotels that offer their travelers these types of services. This is an option for small accommodation providers to consider, as they are uniquely situated close to the heart of their local culture.

The fact is, Airbnb is more focused on offering home rentals to travelers who are looking for an experiential trip in a new destination.

However, B&Bs and boutique hotels can list their accommodations on the site and attract a new type of traveler to their properties.


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