Airbnb once offered affordable travel that made you feel like a local.
Now, prices — and cleaning fees — often exceed those of hotels, while faceless serial hosts are more likely to leave a lockbox code and a list of chores than sightseeing tips.
Yes. Chores and a cleaning fee.
Can Airbnb get back to the good ol’ days?
On Monday, Airbnb announced changes in response to inflation, a possible recession, and “growing guest frustration with prices, cleaning fees, and checkout instructions.”
- Starting next month, guests can choose to see listings’ total prices upfront — including fees but excluding taxes — when they search.
- Airbnb’s algorithms will also prioritize total price.
- In 2023, hosts will get new pricing tools — though Airbnb didn’t say what they are.
- In the coming months, guests will be able to see checkout instructions prior to booking and leave feedback on them.
According to Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky, reasonable checkout tasks include tossing out food, shutting off lights, and locking up. Vacuuming and laundry? Not so much.
Will it help?
Displaying cleaning fees doesn’t necessarily lower them, though hosts may choose to do so to remain competitive.
But considering Airbnb reported $2.9B in revenue in Q3, its highest quarter ever and up 29% YoY, people haven’t been choosing hotels in droves — yet.
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