I would love to hear some opinions on whether you consider Airbnb to be your employer?
Also what are your opinions of Airbnb as an employer? Do they act in a way that empowers hosts to earn income in an entrepreneurial, flexible and positive way, or do they operate in a way that leaves hosts vulnerable (via changes in regulation, top-down management, lack of compensation for damages etc.)?
Not an employee. Consider myself a small business. They are just a platform I use.
In regards to your other comments about empower vs leave vulnerable, I believe it’s my responsibility to have my guests behave appropriately. It’s great when Airbnb supports the hosts but I have come to expect the opposite and very rarely involve them.
What a silly question, in my humble opinion of course.
And I consider them to operate in a way that leaves me vulnerable - we take all the risk and have the asset (our home), and they increase their percent of the take while pushing us to lower our prices so they.
Hell no, I have not had an employer in 30 years
Absolutely not. I’m self employed. I run two businesses out of my home. One is short term rental of my guest room and Airbnb is the booking and payment platform that I use in addition to a few direct pay guests.
Again, not my employer, but…
Yes. Airbnb absolutely empowered me to do something I never would have considered otherwise. I firmly believe that without Airbnb I would have no viable home rental business. At this time I’m not having major issues and the small ones I’ve had Airbnb has been helpful. My low opinion of Airbnb in certain situations comes from my understanding of their policies and how they deal with some hosts, not my own experience. A lot of the vulnerability is due to hosts not being capable managers of their own business and they expect Airbnb to do things that it was never designed to do.
That said I’m ready and willing to jump ship to a viable competitor. I’d love to be on a platform with home sharers only. Not investor hosts, not property management companies, not hotels.
Hell no popped into my head as I read the first question also lol
Then why are you on the platform? I’m not trying to seem rude but I’ve noticed a large number of hosts share that opinion with you so I’m curious as to why the hosts with this shared opinion continue hosting on Air platform. Thoughts?
You’re going somewhere here… what defines an employee vs an independent contractor? There has been internal debate among staff on our breaks that some believe if someone brought this up in court, the IRS 20 factor test could potentially come in to play. If the platform relies on you as hosts and relies on the guest to continue operations, why shouldn’t we (Air) give these hosts benefits similar to employees?
Yes, some agents are working simply for a check but others do have these types of conversations and “I wish we could change…policy or I wish we could do … for hosts” even outside of working hours.
Not to answer for Piton but likely because it brings him bookings. Many of us bitch about Air but stay, that’s the beauty of this forum it gives us a place to vent.
absolutely understood. Again, it wasn’t an attack type of question but many of the co-workers I associate with daily all have similar views and want to better the platform mainly for hosts because without hosts like you guys, we don’t have employment. Air has much room for improvement but we’ve always wondered why hosts who have such strong opinions and feel like Air doesn’t back them continue to host on the platform.
If someone is told how and when to do the work= employee For example I have a real estate brokerage, If I tell the agents they have to do floor time/ be in office certain hours they would be employees.
Correct in my opinion as well. The part I’ve always questioned is if hosts just joined up on their own with other like-minded hosts and say F it we need this, that, and the other thing changed before we host another guest… Air would react or their platform would be done. Therefore some of us agents think hosts have much more control than Air gives them credit for and a new working relationship needs to be developed/strengthened.
I have a montra I keep harping on here, that all situations should be looked at through this lense: What is the best business decision? I am always telling host who come on here asking how to sue and saying their leaving air to take a breath and ask themselves what is the best business decision? I tell them there is no moral victory in quitting because Air does not care. Airs policies confirm this all the time, especially their way of just shutting down the conversation, having the last word basically telling host to F off.
I’m not going to answer for PitonView, but I’ll give my $0.02.
Airbnb has a couple policies that make hosts extremely vulnerable. In particular, the EC policy acts as travel insurance for the guest at the host’s expense. This might work fine in areas where a host is likely to pick up a last minute reservation, but I am in a vacation destination 5+ hours drive from where most of my guests live (IIRC, PitonView is even more remote, on an island). Because we’re also highly seasonal, I make 50% of my annual take in two months of the year. So losing even a single reservation during that peak time is massively damaging.
I can’t recall if it was on this forum or the Air CC, but recently a host lost a valuable weekend reservation in a ski destination because there was a winter storm advisory (I can never remember the classifications, but it was the “snow’s a 'coming!” warning not the “EMERGENCY - don’t go outside” kind). These are VERY common in a winter climate; most skiers would be HAPPY to know snow is on the way. The guests were able to cancel under EC, which is nuts.
Despite its flaws Airbnb is still the best fit for my property type. I miss the “community of travelers” feel Airbnb had back in the day. Like RiverRock, I’ll stick to this platform until it no longer makes business sense.
I agree with what you’re saying but now I’m very interested as to what documentation the guest provided the agent regarding the ec. Weather will only hold if all roads leading to the listing are shutdown and guest can provide documentation proving that. Prime example is the storm we had in Denver shut down dia and many main highways which would be an ec. But, for example, Flagstaff AZ had some good winter storms recently that shut down parts of I-17 and some hosts accommodated the guests in a mutual cancellation but that wouldn’t be an ec. Hmmmm.
Airbnb is simply a listing platform, just like any other listing platform. It doesn’t employ hosts.
Hosts who list their property through Airbnb or other platforms or who market their properties directly are running a business.
They are not an employee and they are not a contractors.
People use a listing platform, because it has the marketing fire power they need to drive traffic and bookings for them.
Just because a host uses a platform doesn’t mean that they think it is without fault, in many cases it’s because it is the least worst option.