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Could Offering an Airbnb Experience Really Make Your Rental Stand Out?


Apr 14, 2020 by Maurie Backman

Listing your home on Airbnb is a good way to attract guests and take in extra short-term rental income. But if you own a home in an area where the competition is fierce -- think beach towns, ski resorts, or major cities -- attracting renters can be easier said than done. Sure, you could offer lower rates than your competition, but that's a hit you may not be able to afford. That's why it pays to consider offering your guests an Airbnb Experience rather than a rental alone.

What is an Airbnb experience?

An Airbnb Experience is an activity you host that gives visitors a taste of the area from your unique perspective. These Experiences may allow guests to explore nature, check out a specific art scene, or do a culinary tour.

For example, your Airbnb Experience could entail:

  • Offering a guided brewery tour.
  • Shuttling guests to area wineries for tastings.
  • Doing a walking tour of local artisan food shops and bakeries.
  • Taking guests behind the scenes at area craft fairs.

Of course, to pull off an Airbnb Experience successfully, you'll need to sink some time into mapping one out. Specifically, it pays to focus on ways you can leverage your unique knowledge of the area as well as your passion for the activity at hand. If you're a food lover who tends to frequent local restaurants, you may want to contact some owners and see if you can get them to offer a behind-the-scenes tour to your guests.

Also, keep in mind that your Experiences can be short events or day-long activities -- it depends on what you want to offer. And while you may, ideally, create an Experience in the hopes of attracting guests to your rental, one good thing about Airbnb Experiences is that you're allowed to offer them to non-renters, too. That's a good way to drum up additional income. Along these lines, you can host an Airbnb Experience even if you don't have a home or room to rent out. Consider it a side hustle that earns you money -- for doing something you really enjoy.

Things to know about Airbnb experiences

Though the guidelines surrounding Airbnb Experiences are pretty flexible -- you can choose the activity, time frame, and number of guests that work for you -- you can't just post an Experience and call it a day. Rather, there's an approval process you'll need to go through before you're given the green light by Airbnb to offer your Experience.

Also, not surprisingly, Airbnb will take a cut of your proceeds from your Experience (though if you partner with a nonprofit, you may have that fee waived). In exchange, however, they'll provide insurance so you're protected if things go awry.

Hosting an Airbnb Experience is a good way to make extra money while meeting new people and helping them explore your area in a unique way. It pays to look into offering an Experience that not only draws new guests to your home but gives former guests an incentive to come back.

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