Airbnb has launched its new Trips concept in Thailand, as it continues to diversify out of the accommodation sector.
At a press conference held in Bangkok on Thursday (16 March 2017), Joe Gebbia, Airbnb’s co-founder and chief product officer, revealed what the new service will look like.
Trips expands on Airbnb’s traditional home-sharing concept by offering three different elements: Homes, Experiences and Places. The aim is to provide travellers with a full spectrum of experiences, with insider information about local events, places to go and activities.
Thailand is a fast-growing market for Airbnb; the company has experienced a 149% increase in nationwide demand for its services in the past year, and a 93% year-on-year increase in the number of Thais wanting to share their homes.
“We want to make travel magical again by immersing curious visitors in local cities and communities, offering the opportunity to see the true character of a city through the people who live there,” said Gebbia.
“Thailand is an incredible tourist destination, with inbound travel on Airbnb growing by 149% in the last year alone, but we know that travellers want to see the real soul of a place, especially in Bangkok – a leading creative capital in Southeast Asia known for its distinctive culture, edgy energy and rich heritage. I’m so excited to be launching Trips in Bangkok today.”
With Trips, Airbnb users will able to book local experiences at the same time as they arrange their accommodation. These experiences are designed and led by local experts, who share their views of their city with travellers. These offerings can also be booked by local residents, independent of Airbnb accommodation, helping those who are looking for something new to do in their home city.
Three of the initial Trips being offered in Bangkok are a Muay Thai experience, fruit carving lessons and cocktail-making. These add to Airbnb’s global collection of more than 800 experiences now available in 13 cities around the world, including Bangkok, Singapore, Tokyo and Seoul in Asia Pacific. Trips is due to launch in more than 50 global cities by the end of the year.