The Novelty Of Airbnb Could Be Wearing Off
There may be good news on the horizon for hotel chains losing business to home-sharing behemoth Airbnb.
The San Francisco-based tech company has caused significant disruptions to the hotel industry over the years, but recent studies show the company has experienced a slowdown in user growth.
A Morgan Stanley survey found that an estimated 25% of all travelers used Airbnb last year. Though this was up from 22% in 2015 and 14% in 2014, the rate at which users are flocking to Airbnb has cooled, as evidenced by the 3% increase in users last year compared to the 8% jump in 2015, Barron's Next reports.
The slowdown has to do in part with familiarity and the company having tapped most of its users, Morgan Stanley analysts said. Airbnb is now relatively commonplace throughout the U.S. and EU, with 80% of consumers aware of service. This means the novelty has likely worn off for the majority of the population.
In addition, safety and privacy issues remain lingering concerns among travelers, giving hotels, which often boast security and concierge services, an upper hand.
The survey also found that Airbnb has little to no effect on the popularity of online travel agencies such as Expedia and Priceline, both of which experienced an increase in traffic last year. Expedia in particular, has experienced success with its own home-sharing platform, HomeAway.