Airbnb’s New Last-minute Booking Service Caters To The More Impulsive Traveler
Never Book a Hotel in Advance Again
This past winter I checked into a Super 8 motel in Maine after discovering that my intended lodging had been rendered inaccessible by several feet of snow and, probably, roaming black bears. I got lucky in that the room only cost about $60 plus tax and the bedspread wasn’t greasy to the touch. But I was prepared to pay much more than that: There aren’t too many options when it comes to last-minute accommodations in Maine.
According to Airbnb, the average user is methodical: She reserves a month in advance, and takes about a week to investigate options and liaise with prospective hosts. But by going out of its way to facilitate last-minute reservations, Airbnb is trying to tap the market for a new kind of consumer: the adventurous, impulsive, even haphazard traveler who needs somewhere to stay that day or the next.