IT’S NOT easy to attract premium travellers but Airbnb is leaving no stone unturned to compete with luxury hotels. The company is working on introducing a new service that will feature upscale listings on its website and app. The pilot is already underway and aims to lure wealthier travellers and attract higher-paying travellers who haven’t used Airbnb yet because they prefer the amenities guaranteed by a luxury hotel room.
The company’s inspectors will ensure that high-end properties maintain quality standards, similar to a plush hotel. The pre-vetted properties will then be opened up for booking. According to media reports, the service is set to launch by the end of 2017 in some markets. For the start-up that began as a couch-surfing service aimed at cost-conscious millennials, the new service might help in the growth of its revenues.
The news comes after Airbnb acquired Luxury Retreats in February, 2017, in a deal that was estimated to be around $300 million in cash and stock. The company is further considering several acquisitions and partnership deals to boost investor confidence and generate more revenues.
Currently valued at $31 billion, the nine year-old start-up has already reached out to some select hosts.