Even though Airbnb is the largest home-sharing platform in the world, many people have not heard of Airbnb. Others may have heard of Airbnb, but do not understand how it works or who would use it. In this article I will explain what Airbnb is, how it works, and who would use the service.

What is Airbnb?

As previously mentioned, Airbnb is the largest home-sharing platform with over 2,000,000 listings worldwide. Simply put… Airbnb is a website and service that allows individuals to rent out their homes to travelers, or allows travelers to stay in other people’s homes as opposed to hotels. Airbnb listings can be found in more than 191 countries and 34,000 cities.

How do you use Airbnb?

The two ways that you can use Airbnb are hosting and traveling. When using Airbnb you will find three different listing types: entire homes, private rooms, and shared rooms. The two most common room types on Airbnb are entire homes and private rooms.

Follow these steps to use Airbnb as a host:

  1. Sign up for Airbnb
  2. Fill out your personal profile
  3. Link your social media channels and ID for verification purposes
  4. Link your bank account or payment method in order to receive funds
  5. Create a new listing
  6. Take and upload photos of your listing
  7. Set your pricing and availability
  8. Submit your listing to Airbnb for review

From start to finish you should be able to create your account and listing in an hour. After your listing is approved you can start hosting immediately. When Rebecca and I first created our listing we received a booking inquiry the same day and confirmed our first trip as hosts!

Creating an account to travel on Airbnb is a very similar process. Follow these steps to use Airbnb as a traveler:

  1. Sign up for Airbnb (skip this step if you signed up as a host)
  2. Fill out your personal profile
  3. Link your social media channels and ID for verification purposes
  4. Link your payment method in order to pay for your trip
  5. Start searching for places to stay and book your first trip!

Creating an Airbnb account is very easy, and when signing up to travel, it should take you less than 30 minutes from start to finish. You can begin traveling immediately.

Why would you use Airbnb?

Many people who have heard of Airbnb but have never used it might not understand the concept or why it’s so useful. Airbnb, and other home-sharing platforms, have revolutionized the way people travel. It can also drastically supplement your income as a host.

There are several reasons why someone might want to host on Airbnb. The first and foremost reason is money! Hosting on Airbnb can supplement your income by thousands of dollars. Rebecca and I rent out our spare bedroom and average more than $1,000 a month. We have been hosting in St. Petersburg for almost 10 months and have made roughly $10,000 in extra income.

Hosting on Airbnb is also a great way to meet people, network, and share experiences. We have hosted guests from all over the world including Germany, France, Mexico, Haiti, and the United Kingdom. One of our guests even rented an airplane and took us flying over the ocean!

Traveling on Airbnb also has many benefits vs staying in hotels. For the most part, Airbnb rentals are going to be much cheaper than hotel rooms. As an example, a cheap hotel room in St. Petersburg will cost about $120 per night. Hotels near the beach may cost upwards of $400. In comparison, you can stay in a very nice private room on Airbnb in a similar location for $40 a night. That adds up big time over the course of a week!

Many people also stay at Airbnb rentals because of the interaction they might have with the host. Hosts are often from the area, or are very familiar with the area, providing great insight on local attractions and travel hot spots. Local tips are hard to come by when staying at a hotel!

The third reason that people might prefer to use Airbnb over hotels is location. Hotels are often in a high traffic area and in close proximity to each other while Airbnb rentals are virtually everywhere! It’s often possible to book an Airbnb that’s closer to your destination than any available hotel. This will save you time (and most likely money).

That’s pretty much it! Airbnb is a simple concept that has revolutionized the travel industry. It is a great way to make additional income as a host, save money on hotels as a traveler, and share experiences with other Airbnb users around the world.

Click here to sign up for Airbnb and begin hosting or traveling!



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