IN WHAT MAY be a case of “Know thy enemy” for some, a pair of recent surveys reveal what consumers like, and what they don’t like, about home-sharing app Airbnb. The news is not exactly good, but neither is it all bad.
On the bad side, 68 percent of the 2,000 Americans surveyed by 1031 Tax Deferred Exchanges fund IPX1031 said they prefer Airbnb over traditional hotels. The reasons why include privacy, uniqueness of the property, free parking and pet-friendliness, and many consider a private home to be better for group events like weddings or family reunions.
But the IBX1031 survey did find weaknesses in the online giant’s armor.
“What types of experiences might leave guests with a bad taste in their mouths? According to our survey, respondents said a listing with deceiving photos, slow or no WiFi, an unresponsive host, and a long list of “house rules” are some of the worst offenses,” the company said in a release on the survey results. “Cleanliness also plays a big factor for guests as ‘dirty linens and sheets’ made the list as well.”
The other survey, by Saint Louis, Missouri-based Clever Real Estate, found that 60 percent of travelers who use both Airbnb and hotels prefer Airbnb when on vacation. However, 68 percent of business travelers prefer staying in hotels when traveling for work, and they’re more likely to have a negative experience at an Airbnb.
Clever’s survey also found some weaknesses in Airbnb’s services, including increasing privacy concerns.
“While public sentiment towards Airbnb remains positive, 58 percent of respondents said they were concerned about hidden cameras, and 7 percent said they’ve stayed in an Airbnb and discovered a hidden camera,” the real estate company said.
Also, Clever found that Marriott International’s Homes & Villas luxury rental service is, launched last month, has found some interest among high-end travelers who like the idea that it falls under the company’s rewards program.
Some other findings from the surveys include:
- WiFi and private bathrooms were among the most preferred amenities for Airbnb users, IBX1031 found.
- Clever’s survey found that 54 percent of homeowners said they’d consider renting out their homes with Airbnb or a similar vacation rental app, and 82% believe that Airbnb is a good way to make money from their property.
- In Clever’s survey, 72 percent of respondents say they plan on staying at an Airbnb within the next 12 months, and 71 percent believe Airbnb has a positive impact on the global tourism and travel industry overall.
Hotel associations like AAHA and the American Hotel and Lodging Association, have been protesting some of Airbnb’s business practices and tax arrangements with some states.