Airbnb Expects Unique Recoil in Travel


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Airbnb is an online booking platform that is expecting a travel rebound “unlike anything we have seen before” after seeing a big jump in holiday bookings.

In the initial months, the US bookings beat pre-pandemic levels. Hence, there was a “steady improvement” in Airbnb’s business in the UK and France.

But since many countries are recovering from the lockdown, its demand has increased.

With more and more customers demanding long-term stays and rural properties, booking values have jumped 52% to $10.3bn.

However, the company also reported a net loss of $59bn as it paid back covid related loans.

If compared to other hospitality businesses, Airbnb has more customers interested in more properties away from the city during the pandemic.

Up till 31 March, family bookings during holidays have also outstripped those for smaller groups or solo travellers, the firm said.

“While conditions aren’t yet normal, they are improving, and we expect a travel rebound unlike anything we have seen before,” said Airbnb co-founder and chief executive Brian Chesky.

The San Francisco-based firm also said that visitors were searching and booking further in advance.

When the Prime Minister of UK (Boris Johnson) and President of France (Emmanuel Macron) eased the lockdown restrictions, the level of the bookings shot up.

But the company is still at an early stage to give financial projections for the rest of the year.

The company’s business is depending on the “severity and duration” of ongoing travel limitations, predominantly outside of the US.

According to Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, Airbnb is attracting the older generation the most with significant disposal income.

“It’s now a now a household name globally and its model can pivot quickly to satisfy the change in booking behaviour brought about by the pandemic,” she said.

She further added that long-term bookings in rural locations could help the firm’s reputation.

Overall, the online booking platform might have been gaining momentum with every passing day.


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