Part 3: Good things to be aware of with Airbnb Experiences

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3 minutes, 11 seconds

We explored Airbnb Experiences from expectations, what type of products do well, and their standards. Then we looked under the hood at Airbnb Experiences Tips and Tricks

Finally, we investigate the good things to be aware of with Airbnb Experiences

Airbnb Experiences: Duration

A shorter length seems to be the key in many of the most popular experiences on Airbnb. The vast majority of listings are less than five hours, and most average between two and four hours. So this might be an excellent place to advertise your shorter experiences rather than your all-day ones.

Airbnb Experiences: Pricing

Pricing is, of course, at your discretion. Our research seems that $12-$17 per hour is the sweet spot. The vast majority of Experiences with the largest number of positive reviews fall into this zone of pricing. But, again, pricing is usually determined through your overhead. Still, if there is a tour or activity that you already offer that falls into this pricing category, it will likely perform better on the platform than others. Keep in mind that Airbnb does take a 20% commission, so price accordingly.

Airbnb Experiences: Managing your Calendar

Managing your calendar is quite simple; adding and adjusting tours is fairly standard prior to any bookings. Once again, Airbnb does not allow for API with booking platforms, so you’ll need to manage your availability calendar directly on Airbnb’s website or the app. If acquiring guest data is also essential (email, full name, phone number, etc.), you’ll need to find another way to procure this from guests. Airbnb does not readily provide this information to operators.

Airbnb Experiences: Payouts

Payouts are available within 24 hours of the experience and can take anywhere from a day to one week to be transferred to you via your preferred method.

In the U.S., payment methods include:

  • Bank Transfer: No fees; receive funds in 5-7 business days.
  • Paypal: May include fees; receive funds in 3-4 hours.
  • Payoneer Prepaid Debit MasterCard: May include fees, receive funds in
  • 3-4 hours.

Airbnb Experiences: Guest Communication

Guest communication is done solely through Airbnb. The platform does not provide email or phone numbers to the host to communicate directly with guests. This requires the host to manage communication directly. Add an administrator to an account to allow them to communicate with guests.

Airbnb Experiences: Legal

The legal bits and bobs fall directly onto the shoulders of the host. The expectation is that hosts are responsible for ensuring that they meet all of the local legal requirements for insurance and liability and any required licensing. While Airbnb does offer free Experience Protection Insurance for claims of up to $1 million, this does not apply to a wide range of situations. We suggest you take the time to review their Responsible Hosting document in advance.

Terms & Conditions

There are no guest minimums, so tours must run even with just one guest. There are a few exceptions to this along the lines of emergencies and exceptional weather conditions. A listing will be deactivated if it is repeatedly cancelled.

The new 2022 guest cancellation policy allows hosts to select two different policies. The first states, “Guests can cancel until seven days before the Experience start time for a full refund, or within 24 hours of booking as long as the booking is made more than 48 hours before the start time.” The second policy is more straightforward and states, “Guests can cancel until 24 hours before the Experience start time for a full refund.” But, again, as the host, you get to select which works best for you. You can read the cancellation policy here.

Guest Reviews

Guest Reviews are imperative when it comes to Airbnb Experiences. It is quite clear just from looking at the website that listings with more reviews get listed higher, even if the overall rating is lower than some of the listings with fewer reviews. Therefore, prioritise reviews when communicating with guests so that you can continue to be placed near the top of the Experiences page in your location.

Before applying, it might be wise to analyse other listings in your area and other listings that are similar to yours but not in the same geographic region. This will get you a sense of what works for your type of listing and what does not. It will also help you determine a reasonable price point to ensure that you can still attract bookings and remain competitive.

Conclusion: To Airbnb or Not to Airbnb?

That remains up to each individual tour operator. What factors are most important to you? Does the lack of a minimum group size not pose an issue to your business model? Does the lack of a cancellation policy jive with your operations? Does the potential for accessing a new market outweigh the other policies that accompany participation in Airbnb?

Regardless of what you decide, be sure to keep an eye on Airbnb Experiences. Their status as a disruptor in our market will seemingly stick around for some time and could produce some interesting ripples across the industry. Additionally, while Experiences might not be a match for your business today, you never know what things will look like in a year, so be sure to revisit as needed.

Download our full Airbnb Experiences Market Guide 2022 for free. This guide discusses what to know before you apply, how to apply, and how to make Airbnb work for you.

Looking for a tour booking software for your experiences? Extend your distribution with indie Travel marketplace and manage all your bookings in one place. Try for free today or contact us now for a demo.

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