While it may seem as though the apartment-sharing portal Aribnb is cutting into hotel profits at every turn, there is one area where the silicon valley site is not getting business: business travelers.
The same thing that makes the company impervious to negative reviews for personal travelers is its downfall with business clients, Herome Oskam of the Hotel School at the Hague told audiences at the ITB Convention in Berlin.
“People don’t have disappointing experiences on Airbnb because they blame themselves if something goes wrong,” Oskam said. “They just tell themselves that they picked the wrong Aribnb to stay at and don’t shy away from the platform as a whole. But a travel manager or secretary would be blamed if something goes wrong on a business trip and no one wants to take that risk.”
While stepping into someone else’s life can be charming when you are on vacation, a plumbing problem, noisy neighbors or a fickle WiFi connection can exasperate the jet-lagged business traveler.
But in order to take advantage of this, hotels have to be rigorous in their quality control to create a truly reliable experience that will gain the loyalty of travel managers.
“Unfortunately for hotels, Airbnb is here to stay,” Oskam said.
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