Airbnb now has 43,400 active South African listings, and many of its clients are local citizens using the service to travel inside the country.
44% of South Africans who used Airbnb to travel have stayed in South Africa, which shows that locals are enjoying local travels. The company told MyBroadband that it expects authentic travel experiences with local hosts to become even more popular, which bodes well for Airbnb. Airbnb further expects the growth in ecommerce and mobile commerce to drive its growth in the country, especially with the tech-savvy millennial generation.
“Millennials are increasingly tech-savvy and are moving towards not only shopping and buying online,” said Airbnb. “They also value experiences over material things, which is why products such as Airbnb Experiences is perfect for them.”
Africa Travel Summit
Airbnb has also announced a £1-million investment in Africa, which will be used to launch the Africa Travel Summit. The conference will bring leaders from across the continent to South Africa to discuss various topics, including how technology can act as catalyst for change in the tourism industry.
“How to work across sectors to build a more inclusive tourism model” will also be a topic for discussion, said the company.
Now read: Airbnb makes it easier to list rooms
Airbnb will implement virtual reality previews of rooms available on the platform in the future. The VR service will allow users to take a look at a room before they book it, said the company. It said the VR service will also lets users explore cities, which will provide an overview of the accommodation and its location in relation to other points in a city.
Airbnb also plans to implement AR (augmented reality) features into its service in the future, which will help acclimate travellers to their new surroundings.
- ^ virtual reality previews (press.atairbnb.com)
- ^ The US military is studying falcons to build drone killers (mybroadband.co.za)
An Airbnb client who booked into a Melbourne house has allegedly been murdered by three men who live there, reported The Guardian. According to the report, Ramis Jonuzi was paying £30 a night to stay at the home, and on Wednesday night he was allegedly raped and murdered. Craig Levy, Ryan Smart, and Jason Colton appeared in the Melbourne magistrate’s court on Friday for the crime.
Levy and Smart were charged with murdering Jonuzi. Colton was charged with murder and raping Jonuzi with an object. “There is no place on Airbnb for such an abhorrent act,” said Airbnb.
“We have removed this listing from our platform and will cooperate with law enforcement on their investigation.”
- ^ The Guardian (www.theguardian.com)
- ^ Airbnb hosts in Namibia must register or go to jail (mybroadband.co.za)