Number of the Day

How Airbnb Redefined the Staycation, by the Numbers

Bookings on the platform collapsed when the pandemic hit, but rebounded within months

Photo illustration, source: Stephen Wheeler/Unsplash

300 miles or less: That’s how close to home the majority of guests booked their Airbnbs this August, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The pandemic has been a roller-coaster ride for Airbnb. After taking drastic steps to keep the company afloat in the early days of the pandemic, including laying off a quarter of its workforce and taking on billions of dollars in debt, fortunes quickly turned around for the home-sharing giant, with bookings back to pre-pandemic levels by July. Remote work, social distancing, and the new hazards of air travel created demand for more space within driving distance, and urbanites began flocking to the platform to get away from their cramped apartments.

The length of stays has also been longer during the pandemic, increasing by 18% on average between January and June. This has meant that hosts in some parts of the country, like upstate New York, have been overwhelmed by demand with some guests extending their stays for months at a time and some hosts renting out unfinished properties.

All of that bodes well for Airbnb’s plans to go public in November or December this year at a $30 billion valuation.

Sooner the better, Airbnb — before winter dampens city dwellers’ enthusiasm for escaping into the outdoors.

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