The Airbnb 2022 May Release: What Hosts need to know
A note from Brian Chesky, Airbnb CEO and Co-Founder
Every one of your homes on Airbnb is one of a kind. But for the past 25 years, traditional travel search has made it hard to find them. That’s because people have to enter a location and dates into a search box and they only see results that match what they type in the box.
Starting today, we’re making it easier than ever for people to discover your homes with Airbnb Categories. Now when guests open Airbnb, they’ll immediately see over 50 categories with 4 million homes that showcase the things that make your properties great—including their style and amenities, location and nearby activities, like golfing, surfing and skiing.
Even if guests search for a specific destination, we’ll show them categories with additional homes they may never have found. We’ll add even more categories over time because we believe there could be a category for every home and every Host. And, that’s not all.
With more people than ever staying longer, we wanted to provide even more options for these trips. So we’re launching Split Stays, an innovative new feature that pairs two homes together in a single trip. This means guests will see an average of up to 40% more of your homes when searching for longer stays. We’re also adding AirCover protections, which we introduced to Hosts last year, for your guests.
With all of these features in a single update, this launch represents the biggest change to Airbnb in a decade.
A new way to search
We’re introducing an all-new app designed around Airbnb Categories. When guests browse Airbnb, they’re presented with over 50 categories that group homes into curated collections based on their unique style, location or proximity to a travel activity.
Categories showcase places with amazing views or inspiring design, properties located on a lake or near a national park, and homes that offer access to iconic cities or golfing. These are just a few of the categories that include 4 million unique homes made possible by you.
When guests search by a specific destination, they’ll discover listings within a category called All Homes. They’ll also get additional categories based on that location, making it easy to discover incredible homes within, or just beyond, their search area. And listings can appear in multiple categories. So, if your Lake Tahoe home includes a chef’s kitchen, the listing can appear in the Lake Category and the Chef’s Kitchen Category—in addition to Lake Tahoe search results.
The benefits are even stronger for those of you with listings outside top tourist destinations. Categories make it easier for guests to discover unique stays in places they wouldn’t have otherwise searched. For example, an aspiring musician looking in the Creative Spaces Category can find a home in Georgia with a full recording studio.
Categories can also help to inspire guests to stay in new locations. With the previous ways of searching, someone booking a holiday in the UK might have thought about only staying in London or places they know. Today, they could search through categories that interest them and be inspired to stay in a Countryside home not far from Oxford or a Tiny Home near Manchester.
Homes in each category go through a curation process. Millions of active listings on Airbnb are evaluated using machine learning to analyse titles, descriptions, photo captions, structured data from Hosts and reviews.
These new categories are just the beginning of this new way to explore. Over time, we'll introduce even more categories that showcase the unique features and special locations of your properties.
What you can do as a Host:
- Listings continue to be ranked based on a number of factors including quality, price, popularity, proximity in the case of location searches and photo quality. So, make sure your listing is current, complete and accurate.
- Listing photos that are representative of a category and have the potential to inspire tend to feature higher in the category. Be sure to add great photography to your listing.
- Highlight unique features of your place, like its historical significance or design attributes, within your listing settings.
- Learn more about the 21 new categories.
As more guests search for longer stays, they may find limited availability of places that are available for their whole trip.
As a result, if your listing wasn’t available for the entire desired duration of a guest’s stay, it wouldn’t have been discovered. That’s why we created Split Stays, an innovative new feature that intelligently pairs two listings together when a guest searches for a longer stay—resulting in guests finding up to 40% more listings when they search for a stay of 14 nights or more.*
When a guest searches for a trip of a week or more, Split Stays automatically appear within search results. The guest will then be able to choose between single listings that are available for the duration of their stay, or options that split the trip between two listings in the same destination.
In the past, if a guest searched for a month-long trip but you only had availability for two weeks during that time, your space wouldn’t have shown up in search results. With Split Stays, your listing can be paired with another listing to cover the entire trip, so it becomes an option for more guests.
Each Split Stay pairs two properties that match the location, property type and amenities from the search. For example, if a family searches for a place with accessibility features, such as a step-free guest entrance or wider doorways, Split Stays will include two listings that contain these features.
When accessing Split Stays on a map, an animated line visually connects the two spaces to show guests the distance between them and the sequence of the stays. Once a guest selects a Split Stay, they’re guided through an easy-to-use interface to book each stay—one at a time, the same way your listing is booked today.
What you can do as a Host:
- Listings will be eligible to be included in Split Stays if they have a minimum of three nights of availability, so you may want to adjust your calendar accordingly.
- To be eligible for even more Split Stays, we recommend you increase the maximum length of stay to at least seven nights.
- Now is also a good time to highlight popular amenities for longer stays, like fast and reliable Wi-Fi, a laptop-friendly workspace and accessibility features.
- Learn more about how to appeal to guests interested in staying longer.
AirCover—protection for every Host and guest
The strength of Airbnb is built on Hosts’ commitment to offer guests great stays. As more guests discover more places on Airbnb, we want them to know that if something goes wrong, you’ll work with them to find a solution.
In the rare event that something happens outside your control and you aren’t able to resolve the issue, Airbnb is there to help. That’s why we’re adding even more AirCover protections to include every Host and every guest. This will ensure that everyone has the confidence to host and stay on Airbnb.
In November of 2021, we introduced AirCover for Hosts—top-to-bottom protection, free for every Host and only on Airbnb. AirCover for Hosts provides $1 million USD in Host damage protection and $1 million USD in Host liability insurance.**
Now, if a serious issue comes up during a guest’s stay and you aren’t able to resolve it, AirCover provides four protections for every guest on every stay:
- Booking Protection Guarantee: In the unlikely event you need to cancel a guest’s booking within 30 days of check-in, we’ll find your guest a similar or better home, or we’ll refund them at Airbnb’s expense.
- Check-In Guarantee: If a guest can’t check in to your place and you aren’t able to resolve the issue—for example, if your guest can’t access your property and can’t get in touch with you—we’ll find your guest a similar or better home for the length of their original stay, or we’ll refund them at Airbnb’s expense.
- Get-What-You-Booked Guarantee: If at any time during a guest’s stay, they find your space isn't as advertised—for example, the refrigerator stops working and you can’t easily fix it, or it has fewer bedrooms than listed—the guest has three days to report it, and we’ll find them a similar or better home, or we’ll refund them at Airbnb’s expense.
- 24-Hour Safety Line: If a guest ever feels unsafe, they’ll get priority access to specially trained safety agents, day or night.
Get complete details on how AirCover protects every guest’s booking and any exclusions that apply.
As a reminder, AirCover is always included and always free for both you and your guests. Its features are also available directly within the Airbnb app and website, making it easy for guests to contact you or get help from Community Support if necessary.
What you can do as a Host:
*According to Airbnb internal test data as of 14/4/2022.
**Host damage protection, Host liability insurance and Experiences liability insurance don’t cover Hosts who offer stays through Airbnb Travel, LLC or Hosts with stays in mainland China and Japan, where the China Host Protection Plan, Japan Host Insurance and Japan Experience Protection Insurance apply. Host damage protection isn’t related to Host liability insurance. Keep in mind that all coverage limits are shown in USD, and there are other terms, conditions and exclusions.
Information contained in this article may have changed since publication.
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