AirBnB Chief Believes Travel Has Been Changed For Ever By The Pandemic

According to AirBnb’s boss, the Covid-19 pandemic has changed forever the manner of travelling by people.

Brian Chesky said that the lines between leisure and business travel are becoming blurred due to remote working.

He said that with people seeking more “human connection”, travellers are opting to spend longer time with friends and family.

Chesky stated: “I believe that what we are seeing today is an entire revolution of how we travel. We used to live at one place, our house. Now we travel to another place, the office. He added that all three places now converge.”

“All we can believe is that employers won’t force employees to return to work five days a weeks to see that nothing has changed,” Chesky added.

With approximately 80 per cent of its business getting lost within just a few months of onset of the pandemic, the company has been amongst the worst hit by the health crisis.

Even though there has been a change in consumer behaviour, there has been a strong rebound in demand since last summer, Chesky said.

He said that the use of remote working technologies such as Zoom had “fundamentally altered” the need to travel to work. This pattern is likely to continue, he added.

People were now choosing to work and live away from home for several days, a week or even a whole summer.

“Some people are deciding to hop around and not even have permanent residences,” Mr Chesky said.

He also stated that people seek greater “human connection” through travel, as they work more alone at home.

Extended weekend bookings for families by AirBnB in the United States increased 70 per cent in the second quarter 2021, compared to the same period of 2019.

The company also saw “measurable increases” in the number of nights booked for large listings and family vacations this year.

Chesky stated that people are now trying new destinations and spending less time on tourist hotspots.

“The world will never return to its former state, and travel will never go back to what it was. This doesn’t necessarily mean that nothing from the past world will be returned, but it does mean that we don’t go back in history, we only move forward,” Chesky said.

Airbnb was founded in 2007 and announced that it has received one billion guests to its listings all over the globe.

It also stated that it now has more listings than all six top hotel chains in the world.

Despite its popularity the lodging platform has been criticised because it drives up rents in certain markets by taking long-term accommodation off the market.

Protests have been held in cities like San Francisco and Barcelona. There are also stricter regulations for short-term rental housing companies.

(Adapted from BBC.com)

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