AIRBNB GROWING “..said it would begin certifying some homes with a service called Plus..” By Todd Horwitz, Bubba Trading



Airbnb Inc., looking to solidify sales ahead of an initial public offering expected as soon as next year, is adding more hotels to its site, along with a loyalty program and new tiers of listings that include luxury and more budget-friendly offerings.

The home-rental site, valued by investors at $31 billion, announced the changes at an event here on Thursday featuring Chief Executive Brian Chesky and hundreds of hosts. Airbnb also said it would begin certifying some homes with a service called Plus that will evaluate more than 100 features, including design, accessibility, and comfort.

Rather than just searching for a home on Airbnb and flipping through the photos or reviews, the new tiers may offer customers willing to spend more an opportunity to tap into the same expectations they’d get from a luxury resort — or, at least, a higher-end one aiming to hit the status of something like the Sofitel in Bangkok, Thailand.

Frequent business travelers often have accumulated massive piles of reward points (and maybe have bigger travel budgets) and may be accustomed to this, and there’s also plenty of opportunity to target the same kinds of experiences that something like an Atlantis full-service resort in the Bahamas might offer (with water slides and all).

In addition to those tiers, which are being announced at an event at San Francisco this morning the company also is adding new ways to search for property on its service. The new brackets are vacation home, unique space, B&B and Boutique. All these basically existed on the platform, but that segmentation wasn’t there yet. Hosts are going to have an opportunity to have a more granular way of classifying their homes. As Airbnb pushes itself to be a community-driven product, it’s not surprising that a huge event would show up at a huge venue including those same super-hosts. Airbnb hopes to reach 1 billion annual bookings by 2028, the company said Thursday. It’s booked a total of 300 million over the past 10 years.

Keep those stops tight
Todd “Bubba” Horwitz



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About the author

Todd Horwitz - Author of “Average Joe Options“. Todd began his trading career in 1980 at the CBOE. He was one of the original traders in the OEX & helped start the SPX. He is a member the CME where he trades S&P futures as well as foreign currencies & is a regular contributor to CNBC, Bloomberg, BNN, Fox & many other major news networks.