Airbnb may have created an aura of sorts around itself, not least because of its extraordinary growth, but a number of myths have also come into play.
One common idea is that it has fuelled the emergence of a subset of travellers who will only select an Airbnb property for their travel plans.
In other words, it's apparently so achingly cool to be part of the sharing economy genre that travellers will dismiss other types of accommodation for fear of being seen in the wrong place.
"Yeah, I stayed at a super-awesome Airbnb penthouse in downtown Berlin last week. You know, I just can't be dealing with old hotels any more!"
That kind of thing.
This is obviously a problem, especially for hotels as it perpetuates the notion that they can't compete with the coolness of the Airbnb world.
In some respects, most hotels can't, but should that therefore mean that they must forget about trying to attract that subset of Airbnb-types to a property?
The short answer: no.
Speaking during the FITURTech event in Madrid, Spain, this week, Phocuswright director of sales for EMEA and a European Market specialist, Florence Kaci, says the biggest myth around the sharing economy in accommodation is that Airbnb guests, for example, will only look for those types of properties.
In fact, the idea that they will only consider an Airbnb stay when searching for somewhere to stay is wholly wrong.
For example, just 6% of Airbnb users who featured in a study to be released by Phocuswright says they only considered that service when searching for accommodation.
Nearly 40% say they searched for midscale hotel properties, with around 35% looking further up the accommodation ladder at upmarket and luxury properties.
Other types of properties considered in the search process, all of which feature higher in the rankings than the "Airbnb-only" option, include:
NB: Airbnb hipster
- Inn/bed and breakfast
- Home rental on another website
- Staying with friends and family
- Budget/economy hotel
image via Shutterstock.
NB2: Disclosure - author's attendance in Madrid was supported by FITUR.