Building on their ‘Experiences’ model, Airbnb is offering Online Experiences due to the Coronavirus crisis. According to Airbnb, the company has booked more than 400 million guests, staying in Airbnb properties across the world, spanning almost every country. Its 150 million users have a selection of nearly 7 million properties within more than 65,000 cities, in over 220 countries and regions.
I have traveled using Airbnb in some great locations for various reasons. For example, I rented a beach bungalow in Costa Rica, a private home in Aruba (to escape some high hotel rates) and even a small castle in Scotland.
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As the Airbnb business model matured, they launched ‘Experiences in 2016,’ which was another way for the company to generate income other than direct rentals of properties. These were mostly one-on-one, or small group tours, training or learning experiences. I took a cooking class in Madrid and once taught a nightly photography class for a week in Amsterdam to earn a little travel expense money while on assignment in that city known as “Venice of the North.”
Airbnb’s Business Model Affected by Coronavirus
However, the recent worldwide coronavirus pandemic has dramatically affected the economics of the company, like many in the travel industry. Hosts are unable to rent their properties. As a result of either local quarantines, lockdowns for hosts, or restrictions on guests, the rental market has dried up. Though the spread of the Coronavirus has brought many in-person adventures to a halt, Airbnb is still committed to “helping everyone explore the world.”
Airbnb’s latest idea has developed as clever strategy to generate income using Online Experiences as the coronavirus keeps many would be travelers at home. Incidentally many offerings are the same (just conducted online) — and some brand new. Simply log into your AirbnB account, or sign-up for an account to start. Using this link to register for a new account, you’ll save up to $35 off your first rental or experience.
How Airbnb’s Online Experiences Help Hosts During Coronavirus
Airbnb says they are now inviting visitors to learn to cook, exercise, or even mime with Airbnb Online Experiences. You can take a flamenco class with Lidón in Madrid, participate in a tarot card reading in Austin, or visit a colony of penguins in Cape Town—all from the comfort (and safety) of your home.
If hosts previously had offered guitar lesson, cooking lessons or many other similar and unique experiences, it’s possible those can still be shared online. Airbnb is opening up a platform where people can share their talents, culture and experiences with others for a price. That may help generate some revenue for the providers as the world waits for the pandemic to pass.
Airbnb Online Experiences – In Spite of Coronavirus
Here’s a sample of what Airbnb’s Online Experiences have to offer:
Samples of Some Online Experiences
It’s easy to search for the these Online Experiences-
Then the choices open up…
Some of Airbnb’s Online Experiences are quite affordable. I found one offering to “Meet the Animals of Tail Farms” for free! That may interest young children, perhaps stuck at home and seeking something unique to do while quarantined during Coronavirus. You can join in on a comedian from Portugal or a coffee masterclass in Mexico.
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On the other end of spectrum, the offerings for about $60 or more (per session) range from a personal astrology reading, to pasta making from Italy — using Grandmas’ recipe. By the way, some sessions are longer than others.
Of the most expensive sessions ($64 USD, for 1 1/2 hours) is an online group session with Olympic cyclist Alistair Edward Brownlee of the United Kingdom. He is the only athlete to hold two Olympic titles in the triathlon event, winning gold medals in the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games.
Alistair offers a streaming training session on gear, warm-up and shares a virtual tour of locations like Yorkshire, London, Leeds, Rio, and Kona. There’s even a question and answer session at the end of the training for participants.
Airbnb’s Online Experiences taught me how to cook from an Italian chef and I used the opportunity to make a special meal for my wife. I had promised her a trip to Italy before the Coronavirus pandemic
cancelled changed our plans. The least I could do was make lemonade out of lemons.
You can sign up for an AirbnB account if you don’t have one. Using this link, you’ll save up to $35 off your first rental or experience.
While many are self-quarantined and not doing a lot of travel, there’s still an opportunity to experience other destinations. You can also learn from the locales thanks to Airbnb’s Online Experiences. In addition, you’ll be helping invest back into the economy. What would you like to do, virtually?
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