The prevailing themes for the travel industry in 2020 has been, and will end up being, safety, survival, and recovery. For so many in the industry, the coronavirus has spelled doom and disaster, both for its widespread human cost and for its damage to the foundation of tourism. For some, the product they offer actually fits into the aforementioned themes.
Face Mask and Suitcase in the Hotel Room
Airbnb for instance, by virtue of its service, kept the guest a little bit safer by adding a personal touch to the stay – complemented by hand sanitizer, of course. As travel restrictions tightened, the flexibility of Airbnb also added some ease to the nerves of the local traveler. Rounding out the benefits, Airbnb put a generous foot forward by relaxing its refund policies, despite suffering losses of approximately 50% of its total revenue.
Moreover, Airbnb has been growing in popularity since its inception in 2008. The brainchild of Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk, and Joe Gebbia, Airbnb evolved from an idea to a 31 billion dollar company. They had planned on seeing the company traded publicly on the Stock Market, but the coronavirus dampened those plans, temporarily. In fact, Airbnb has already filed their IPO (initial public offering), sticking to their plans of trying to make it public in 2020.
LOS ANGELES, CA – NOVEMBER 17: (L-R) Airbnb Founders CTO Nathan Blecharczyk, Chief Product Officer … [+] Joe Gebbia and CEO Brian Chesky speak onstage during the “Introducing Trips” Reveal at Airbnb Open LA on November 17, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for Airbnb)