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‘Airbnb bust:’ Is the popular booking site on its way out?

Airbnb exploded as the ‘go to’ travel destination provider with an accessible, easy way to plan your next trip. Is its time coming to an end?

Woman looking out at her Airbnb

Airbnb’s were ‘the thing’ for several years, with everyone from elderly couples to young travelers booking them for their quaint and hospitable nature. Unfortunately, according to a Tweet that’s gone viral, many Airbnb hosts are seeing a rapid decline in bookings. Since the busy summer travel season ended, a lot are reporting that their bookings have gone to zero. 

Several stories have floated around about Airbnb hosts being tired of Airbnb, and people are sharing their thoughts everywhere – from news articles to Reddit, using the hashtag “Airbnb bust.”

We suspect the “bust” is most likely a phenomenon among social media sites, but it ironically paints an inaccurate picture of what’s happening in the world. The total demand for short-term rentals rose by about 24% later this year compared to this time last year, as stated by a recent report released by AirDNA, a data platform focused on vacation rentals. The average daily rates climbed to a shocking 31.9% compared to 2019. 

This conflicts with the drama circulating on social media. According to reports, Airbnb is actually doing quite well, considering the circumstances of the world right now.

So, what’s the truth?

A report by The Nerd Wallet explained it perfectly by using the “Apple Effect” as an example. Do you remember the Apple scandal when they were sued for slowing down older phones? They did that to force customers to upgrade, which obviously makes them more money. When that happened (you can also compare it to the current situation surrounding Twitter), social media was full of backlash from angry consumers vowing to switch to Android. Did that actually happen, though? Well, no. The company has actually tripled in value since then. 

The big issue for consumers is that though they hate the values of these large companies that dominate the market, people just don’t like switching to alternatives. Going for an Android after being a dedicated Apple user means learning all the little quirks that go along with those devices. 

The point is, it’s inconvenient and the unknown keeps people away. It’s the same prospect for Airbnb. People are more likely to go with something they know.

So, no, Airbnb isn’t on the outs. When an alternative becomes popular enough, that may change.

Macie LaCau is a passionate writer, herbal educator, and dog enthusiast. She spends most of her time overthinking and watering her tiny tomatoes.

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