HOW TO GROW IN THE AIRBNB MARKET (advice from experienced hosts)

More and more people are assimilating travel into their lifestyle. This is especially true for millennials (ages 24-35) and Generation Z-ers (18-23) who make it a point to go out several times a year.

together with Generation Z-ers (ages 18-23), they are considered to be the most travelled among all age groups.

The itch to travel has grown out of young people’s quest for new and meaningful experiences (new people, new language, new culture) which overshadows their desire for material acquisitions. Together, they are considered to be the most travelled among all groups.

Such lifestyle changes have exerted pressure on the travel industry to grow and innovate.

Small wonder that the nascent airnb industry quickly flourished after its inception in 2009 (when airbnb.com was launched online.)

Airbnb is a online marketplace that lets people lend out their surplus living spaces — condos, townhouses, farmhouses, cottages, spare rooms, etc.) to visitors in need of temporary lodging. . In other words, it connects space providers (the hosts/entrepreneurs) with space users (the guests/customers).

On the year of its inception, the facility helped 21,000 travelers find short-term living accomodations. More current figures show airbnb clientele to have reached six million a year.

Experienced airbnb hosts swear by the financial and psychic perks of airbnb hosting.

By renting out her two-bedroom condominium unit in Mandaluyong City, Alina Calleja of Pasig City says ishe earns extra while engaged in her main job as freelance TV producer/director/scriptwirter/voice artist.

Remarkably, the supplementary income has allowed her to travel more frequently than ever in new places where she makes it a point to stay in airbnb units like her own.

Mark Bitara, a FilAm who has several airbnb units in Huntsville, Texas confirms there’s money in airbnb hosting. Not just side income, he says, but rather income big enough to provide a living.

Nonetheless, for Mark, the No. 1 reward from the business is non-monetary: the fellowship with guests. “You meet all kinds. and most are good people who appreciate the efforts you take in making heir stay as pleasant as possible.” Many of them have become repeat customers. Some have even become friends.

The Bitaras love to delight their guests with unexpected treats of fruits, flowers, beer and wine, and , sometimes, cinema tickets. Now and then, they serve them traditional Filipino breakfasts of tapsilog and longsilog .

Another experienced host went out on record to say that airbnb hosting helped his family fulfill their aspiration to own a home. One-third of the mortgage of the home they recently purchased comes from airbnb earnings,

Renzie Baluyut who manages several small businesses in Cavite City enthuses that “there is nothing as fulfilling as earning from something you love doing.” Renzie and his wife left Manila several years ago to settle in their farmhouse in Amadeo, Cavite.

Like in most businesses, there are pitfalls to avoid in the business.

For one it is a highly competitive. Probably because it is a low-barrier business (that is, a business comparatively easier to go into than most), many have gone into airbnb hosting.

For this reason, says Mark, one has to have something new to offer all the time. “We have to be creative,” he says, “lest we find ourselves at the bottom the heap.

Thus, Mark and his sons make it a practice to delight their guests with small treats like flowers, fruits, beer, wine, or even an occasional ticket to the cinema. Occasionally, they would serve them traditional Filipino breakfasts like tapsilog.

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