Hotels are turning to AirBNB for renting rooms

By Money Times

Dec 16, 2015 10:16 AM EST

AirBNB is a platform on which people all around the world can rent out spaces of their choices. But now actual hotels are also seen on AirBNB, renting rooms.

According to Consumerist, AirBNB is marked as a listing service for those willing people, who are in an online search of an appropriate space for rent out, either a spare room or an entire vacation home. It is considered as a vital "sharing economy" site and now people scrolling down the website will also come across some rent offering from actual hotels too.

AirBNB customers are now benefitting by offerings from multiple hotels too, along with an enterprising subletter or an enterprising landlord who is willing to encourage guests in a residential area. AirBNB attracts thousands of customers by making the availability of about 2 million rooms on any given night. Hostels and hotels tend to take advantage of such demanding platform.

The reason behind their preference is quite obvious. Managers at boutique hotels comparatively said that renting space on platforms like Expedia and Priceline typically charge hotels a 10% to 25% fee per reservation. And on the other hand, Airbnb charges hosts a 3% fee, as mentioned by Fast Company.

"The commission is so much more attractive," says Stephan Westman, a hotel industry consultant who has listed hotel rooms on Airbnb. "Any hotel that needs to fill rooms, I don't understand why they wouldn't need to use it as one of their marketing arms."

Airbnb has been previously recognized as a renting site for bed-and-breakfasts and hostels. Moreover, hosts are given choices to categorize their listings as "bed and breakfasts" or "dorms." Participation of boutique hotels has changed its tradition of just booking rooms in other users' homes.

As mentioned in a white paper published in 2013 by travel industry research firm Phocuswright, hotels are considered as a vast business with an online travel agent accounting for 13% of global hotel bookings. Last year owner of, Travelocity, and Orbitz, Expedia generated around $5.8 billion. And conversely Priceline, owner of and Kayak, did $8.4 billion of business last year.

Previously, AirBNB was criticized for affecting housing markets badly and was labeled as a leader for accommodating illegal hotels. So in order to prove the critics wrong, it announced in November to begin acting upon its policy of collecting hotel taxes and sharing of rentals data in market cities, as reported by City Lab.

Other than that, it asked verification from hosts in housing-crunched cities to make sure that they have put their permanent residences for rent, not a separate large property specifically fulfilling the renting purposes.

In New York City, there are numerous hotel listings on Airbnb as Fast Company reports, "The Box House Hotel in North Greenpoint, Brooklyn, which offers apartment-style suites, lists at least five of nine rooms on Airbnb;The Riff in Manhattan, which recently converted from hostel to hotel, lists one private room in a "hipster hotel/hostel;" and The Union Hotel in Gowanus, Brooklyn, advertises "plush carpeting floors, quilted custom beds, penny-tiled bathrooms, and deco chandeliers,"

Hotels and hostels situated in Los Angeles, Denver, Chicago, Honolulu are also using AirBNB platform. 

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