Roughly one in five bookings on Airbnb are for stays of 28 days or longer – and more than 100,000 people stayed 90 days+ in an Airbnb last year, the company reported.
The growing trend for longer stays seems to be driven by remote workers who want to spend more significant periods away from their usual location.
CEO Brian Chesky thinks it’s such a growing market that he’s going to live in Airbnbs. “It’ll be fun, but more importantly it will help us improve the experience for people who can now live anywhere,” he said.
Here’s what we hope gets improved once Chesky experiences working remotely and living in Airbnb properties:
Trustworthy WiFi speeds
In order to work from an Airbnb, the first thing you need is fast and reliable WiFi.
At the moment it feels like you’re taking a gamble on the internet speed. Sure, you can forensically pore over the reviews to get some hints. It’s usually easy to spot the places that have terrible WiFi, but it’s almost always impossible to know whether a property will be suitable.
Most of the time you have to roll the dice and hope that the internet is useable for your upcoming stay. Or that it doesn’t break. Or that you’re near coffee shops or coworking spaces in case you need a backup.
We’re hoping that Airbnb will find a way to verify internet speeds and include this information more clearly in listings and when you filter results.
More flexibility for booking longer stays
Our upcoming two-month booking doesn’t inspire spontaneity. If we want to cancel, we’ll lose the first 30 days that we’ve paid already. Being locked-in to a property and having to commit to an extended period doesn’t feel fair when travelling during a pandemic.
We’re used to discounts meaning less flexibility, but when a sudden travel rule change could prevent you from leaving the country, it’s stressful to know you face paying twice for accommodation.
We’d like to see a more flexible approach to longer bookings, so that we can be more spontaneous with our plans. We don’t want to overpay by booking on a week-to-week basis, but it would be awesome if you could ‘reserve’ a place for a set time and confirm or cancel that booking within a reasonable time period. For example, maybe you could cancel within the first week if the property isn’t as advertised, or the WiFi isn’t sufficient, without paying a penalty?
We know you can’t just throw a new kitchen into every space – but for long-term stays, a kitchen is essential.
While it’s unlikely that any Remote Work Rebels would book an entire property for a long stay if it didn’t have a kitchen, it’s surprising how many hosts don’t let you use one if you’re staying with them in a room.
They often have a mini-fridge in your room, but those things are noisy!
We spent a few days at an Airbnb in Croatia last summer and were caught out by this. The mini-fridge was so loud we couldn’t sleep, so we had to turn it off and ended up snacking on pretty rubbish food while we were there.
We’d love to see more flexibility for using kitchens and storing food outside of noisy fridges in the bedroom.
It’s hard to know who to trust to help with a transfer from the airport to the Airbnb. Many hosts offer to arrange this but at insanely inflated prices with third-party companies.
We’d love to find a more trustworthy way to book a transfer, instead of relying on uber. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could pay extra for your host to collect you, removing any risk of getting lost and giving you some time to get to know each other on the journey?