What is Airbnb Experiences?
Social media has opened up a window into new worlds, allowing us to see faraway travel destinations in new and exciting ways. With this new perspective, travelers no longer flock to run-of-the-mill landmarks or look to dine at restaurant chains. Instead, they clamor for one-of-a-kind, bespoke experiences that truly immerse them in local sights and subcultures.
Popular short-term rental platform Airbnb recently capitalized on this burgeoning wanderlust by adding Airbnb Experiences to its portfolio of travel booking options. This offering provides travelers with a way to connect with local experts, artisans, and connoisseurs across the globe.
This service benefits everyone in the hospitality, entertainment, and tourism industries. For instance, if you’re a local chef highly trained in your city’s signature fare, you can offer a culinary workshop where visitors try their hand at cooking cultural delicacies. If you’re a historian, you can offer an intimate tour. You get the picture. By hosting an Airbnb Experiences, you can showcase your passion to create unforgettable experiences, give guests a one-of-a-kind experience they crave, and make money doing what you love.
Major trends influencing Airbnb Experiences hosts
Tours and activities are a flourishing $135 billion a year industry, and Airbnb Experiences offer the chance for any business owner or entrepreneur to get in on the action. As more and more cities enact strict regulatory policies negatively impacting short term home rental postings, Experiences are a new way for Airbnb to diversify into other spaces. It’s working; guests are registering for these authentic, small-group activities and tours to the tune of over 1.5 million bookings per year. Now’s a fantastic time to turn your passion into profit and be a part of this personalized travel experience.
How do you become an Airbnb Experiences host?
Airbnb isn’t looking to offer its customers any old tourist attraction. Customers demand unique experiences that give them an authentic glimpse into a destination—something special, Instagram-worthy, and tailored to their preferences. Offering generic walking tours or accompanying travelers to an ordinary tourist attraction won’t cut it. So how do you create an experience that appeals to enthusiastic travelers?
1. Identify your niche
Think of ways you can harness your individual passion. Airbnb looks for hosts able to provide a personalized adventure travelers cannot find elsewhere. What local sights and subcultures can you share with travelers? Perhaps you’re a local fitness buff that’s mapped innovative running routes around the city. You could give a running tour that shows off your city’s most fascinating nooks-and-crannies by foot. Or if you’re an aspiring actor obsessed with local film locations, take guests on a walking tour packed with your personal expertise. By leveraging something you’re truly passionate about, you can provide a boutique experience that no one else can rival.
2. Create an unforgettable profile
Your profile should showcase how you’ll whisk guests away on the cultural, culinary, or adventure experience of their dreams. How? Dazzle guests with vivid, high-quality imagery and immersive storytelling language. Craft a creative narrative that explains how your unique perspective will offer guests the one-of-a-king experience they crave.
Show your face, too. Use inviting images of yourself to show potential guests who they’ll spend time with. Guests will travel from all over the world, so ease any concerns they might have by showcasing your warm, honest personality. The “your host” section should also include details into your expertise: any training, education, or life experiences that make you an exciting, go-to master of your chosen niche.
3. Review Airbnb terms and your local policies
Even if you’ve hosted overnight guests with Airbnb, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the additional policies that pertain to Experiences hosts. For example, if your experience includes an extreme sports adventure, you should find out if you need to explore additional insurance policies beyond what Airbnb offers.
You also need to take a local at the policies enacted by your local city and town. If your experience involves handling food, your city may call for a food or health permit. Learn about these policies in advance so you’re not stuck with any last minute surprises.
4. Prepare your application
While it’s relatively easy to start listing your home or spare room on Airbnb, Experiences has a slightly more moderated platform. For one, you have to demonstrate your expertise in your particular niche before your experience gets approved. Airbnb wants genuine, unique, participatory activities—not just something guests watch or observe. Your application must also include all of the details about your experience; including the cost, duration, and precisely what you include in the package. Once you submit your information, be prepared to wait. Each submission is closely reviewed by the Airbnb team to ensure it provides the kind of handcrafted, tastemaker experience guests expect.
Airbnb Experiences vs. other booking alternatives
Airbnb Experiences also give you an unparalleled chance to showcase your creativity. While other platforms hire you to perform a templated tour, with Airbnb, you’re able to build your experience from the ground up. Plus, you’re able to set your own schedule. You’ll have the flexibility to make exciting detours based on the specific desires of that day’s guests. Infuse your personality and all the little details about something you love without constraints on your creativity.
As more industries move into this style of more personalized services, there are a few risks you have to consider. For example, per Airbnb Experiences policies, you must host your activity even if you only get one or two reservations. While other platforms vary in cancellation policies, Airbnb’s sheer traffic makes it a great opportunity for capturing customer interest.
Are you ready to become an Airbnb Experiences host? If you’re a passionate, extroverted local with a penchant for authentic, handcrafted experiences, you’re the perfect candidate for this exciting program. With 150 million users in over 65,000 cities, the Airbnb Experiences platform is the perfect partner for hosting your offering. The ready supply of guests logging in to book lodging gives you an unparalleled pipeline of enthusiastic potential customers. Now’s the ideal time to take part in this rapidly growing opportunity.