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Airbnb Beta Testing "City Host" - very interesting but REALLY!

Hey I just logged into my account and saw a new sign next to my dashboard “City Hosts” with beta next to it. So I reviewed the video and notice that it is really about being a tour guide for whatever city you are in. What do you all think? I guess if you do not have a full time job or children this may be an opportunity but I am very curious about how your time is compensated. Anyway I am wondering what you all make of this new twist on hosting.

I think Airbnb has lost its mind!

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Wait, this is stuff you have to do on top of providing the room? Like actually taking folks on a tour?! I don’t usually swear here (although I have a mouth like a sailor) but here I go: fuck that.

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And the horse it rode in on …

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Are you saying this is FREE? You don’t get paid for it? If so FORGEDDITABOUTIT

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My aunt in Taiwan already does this as an add on to her Airbnb listing. Her guests will pay her directly in cash. She doesn’t work and now makes SO MUCH MONEY being a tour guide and her boyfriend makes money as the chauffeur. They are building a mini-airbnb empire together. So she’s probably the kind of candidate for this city host thing but I don’t see why she would start doing this for free all of a sudden!

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Kona from Brooklyn Hawaii

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Hi @CatskillsGrrl- no if you check out the website you get paid per person for an amount - so I looked at the Paris offering and you can get a real “Parisian” tour - 1.5 hours for $33.00 / per person and a maximum of 5 in the gourp. So if I am giving the tour it is a possibility of $165. for the 1.5 hours. There are many other “adventures” as well - very activity oriented. Not sure how much Air charges to the guest or to the tour guide since it did not give that information. So I would look at this as a value added vacation item and it may make our life as hosts more complicated if we are expected to provide a tour opportunity or to connect with those who do - just some thoughts.

From what I understand your rent out your room including yourselve as a tourguide.

So, the price of the total package will be higher than only the room.

But still I wonder how AirBnB thinks to cover all risks. Or will this again be a case of “let’s hope the host is stupid enough, and blinded by the money”.

If you drive around with guests in your car and you have an accident, your are responsible, and your normal insurance will not cover it, You will need a commercial vehicle insurance,

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No, it’s not obligatory nor is it free. The idea is that if you have an idea for an activity you can take Airbnb guests for whatever fee you wish. They guests don’t have to be your guests.

No way. They don’t even support hosts in the service they provide now, as it is. I would NEVER in a million years get involved in this.

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Of course MANY hosts pick up their guests at the airport, now - without issue - but I think this idea is frought with all kinds of potential liability. HUGE. Air doesn’t care if your guest falls or twists an ankle or gets hit by a car. You will when you’re sued when your guest as a heart attack. You mark my worlds. Air barely supports hosts now. This is pure Airbnb. Your liability. Their profit.

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I’m going to tell you what I think is happening. Airbnb is moving away from hosting. The business model they built their empire on is being made illegal in city after city across the world. They are moving towards being a Travel company that is no longer centered on peer-to-peer renting.

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I was a professor as a design school in CA and it was forbidden to allow students in my car for any reason, including field trips, the school stated insurance reasons and I would be fired if I did. La même chose

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Picking up your guests from the Airport is also very dangerous ground, if you create an accident and your insurance finds out it was a commercial activity, they will refuse to pay.

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@CatskillsGrrl
You are so right, they are looking for a broader business model

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[quote=“Chris, post:15, topic:6502”]picking up
your guests from the Airport is also …
[/quote]

Yeah, I would never do it just on principle. Lots do, though, and never think of the possible complications. The whole model is going the way all things go. It starts out loosey-goosey, free and breezy and then consequences and liability rears its ugly head. Things go wrong. Sometimes very wrong. And someone will always look for someone to blame.

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It is a new service and it is not free … guests book tours separately from the lodging. It is only in a few cities so far.

Actually, we would like to be part of this because we already offer tours via the LA Metro rail through our local community college (as photo safaris and we give photography instruction as part of the tour – but wouldn’t necessarily do that for an Airbnb tour). We feel the rates being charged are good and that they would be a business opportunity for us and that we could provide a good experience for guests. – Lia

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@LiaGarry Thanks for your explanation and as a rural host, Eastern Shore of Maryland, with a full time job and as a part-time University Professor I felt instantly overwhelmed with the thought of adding any tasks associated with being a host. I do see this as an opportunity for many hosts and others that want to partner with Airbnb to offer what I call “value added hosting”. Also my situation is slightly different since many of my guests use our waterfront apartment as a get-a-way from the city and a time to relax. There are certainly tour opportunities in our area and when I have a moment to think I will see if my son would be interested in leading fishing outings or kayak tours on our river. Thanks again, best

I would do it for that. Definitely.

We’ve had some great guests and I would be happy to show them around if it meant making some extra money.

As it is, we’re pretty strict about the amount of time we spend with guests. Check-in and that’s it. Our time is our own. I would be even more open to it if we could set our own prices.

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