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Survey Says: These Amenities Could Help Home-Sharing Companies Take On Traditional Hotels


In the long-standing battle between hotels and Airbnb, traditional hotels have had a leg up on their short-term rental competitors due to the services and amenities they offer travelers. But a survey conducted by Airbnb suggests that could change.

The home-sharing giant released the results of a consumer survey about amenities on Thursday. The results revealed that among American travelers, amenities are surpassed only by accommodations themselves in terms of impact on vacation quality. Amenities took the top spot among respondents from India, Italy, Mexico and Brazil.

A swimming pool was the most popular amenity worldwide, but for respondents in the U.S., Canada and Australia, free parking beat it for the top spot. Traditionally, pools and parking have been advantages hotels have held over short-term rental apartments, but Airbnb's recent corporate moves have worked to close that gap.

The startup is planning on ramping up its partnership with multifamily developer Niido, called Niido Powered by Airbnb. The concept, wherein units are optimized to be listed on the Airbnb app and long-term rental tenants are incentivized to list their units, had a rocky start at its first property in Kissimmee, Florida.

Airbnb retains an advantage over hotels due to the more home-like experience it provides, as kitchens and pet-friendly units were the third- and fourth-ranked amenities in its survey. To shore up that portion of its business, the company has pushed its Airbnb Plus service, with units verified for design and comfort and serviced by staffers. It has also partnered with Century 21 in Paris to craft more home-sharing-friendly leases for apartment tenants.

All of this comes at a time of relative uncertainty for one of the world's largest startups, as a planned initial public offering this year was derailed by the sudden departure of the company's chief financial officer. Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky has tentatively set the end of 2020 as a new deadline for an IPO, though his public statements remain coy.