Vrbo 2023 traveler value index:

  1. Because it’s not up to me. I am a moderator, not a site owner.

  2. I said unwise, not illegal or stupid or ridiculous.

I have no problem with free speech and if people want to post surveys, they can. However, it is unwise because (as I said above) all hosts vary in their experience, their STR types plus their tolerance, their attitudes, their expectations, their pricing necessities and many other factors.

Therefore one question in a survey posted here could have several dozen different answers. That’s why it’s unwise - it’s unlikely to provide any meaningful statistics.

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It’s interesting.

You said earlier:

I think but can’t be sure you meant to say that “most hosts [here] have good sustainability practices [and say so?] in their listings.”

The implication being what ? That there’s no value in pointing out that sustainable amenities are sought by 90% of guests and half would pay for them?

I wonder how many Hosts are on this site. I’m surprised that after lecturing on how rarely we agree, how ‘there’s a huge diversity’ on this forum, I’m wondering how you could hold any opinion of what most Hosts here ‘have’ and say in their listings about their sustainability practices.

But I’d like to agree with you. I just don’t know.

No, I didn’t mean ‘and say so’. These practices are just normal things these days - there’s no need to point them out. I also didn’t say that there’s no value in pointing them out as far as I recall.

  1. I do not lecture. That’s why I use phrases like ‘I think that…’ or ‘I suspect that…’ or 'I imagine that… or words such as ‘unlikely’.

  2. When you’ve been on a site daily for 7 years, you get a feel for the place and its people.


What’s really going on here is that you and a few others (I am sure there are more) just don’t see any value in this survey, or my posting it.

Typically, when there’s no interest in a post, folks here simply don’t respond to it.

But as you’ve also said, and I agree with this:

So if just a few of us derive value from it, why invest so much energy in this back-and-forth?

Well, as I said, I hadn’t pointed them out either. I was like you in this regard. But after reading that 90% sought out sustainable-amenities and 50% would pay extra for them, I decided to point them out despite the commonplace that not all readers read everything.

I’m not saying I or anyone else needed to point out such practices, but I shared this one takeaway (so far) for me from this survey on the theory that in this ‘huge diversity’ you say we have here there might be others who will find some value in it. I don’t know if their takeaway, or one of them, will be to point out their sustainability practices.

Was I wrong to do post the survey? Is that not in the spirit of sharing we cultivate here?

Or is the idea that if the reader does not find value for itself, or if it is a survey, then it is unwise to post such a thing and a debate will ensue on any value from the posting?

Ah, I realise now that we’re talking at completely cross-purposes.

Glenn, when I referred to posting a survey, I was not talking about you posting survey results.

I was referring to the people, and there have been quite a few, who post their own survey, their questions, here in order to get answers to their question.

Quite often these people say that they are surveying hosts because of an educational project that they are preparing with Airbnb as its subject.

Sometimes they say that it is an educational survey when most of us suspect, due to the nature of the questions, that they are actually developing an app or have some business idea that they’ll eventually want to market to STR hosts.

Coincidentally because I am currently monitoring this site because for the last couple of hours we have had a spate of new posters promoting their wares. As you so rightly said elsewhere, this forum is not here for people to promote their products.

Ahh. A disconnect.

I know of the post you’re referring to, not this one.

OK, I understand.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving Glenn and apologies for the confusion.

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And half the time what they assume is some brilliant idea that no one has thought of before, and that str hosts will really love and want is something that already exists and hosts already use, or something they have no need of. Proving they did absolutely no homework before expecting hosts to spend 10 minutes on a survey based upon false premises. :rofl:


Yes, I agree.

To be clear, your and @jaquo 's response is to the following post:

This is a response to the general topic of the “Traveler Value Index”.

I’ve been in the market research business for over 30 years. The key to understanding how much importance to place on results is understanding:

1.) Who is being asked, and
2.) What are they being asked

My view is that:

1.) WHO IS BEING ASKED? … did I miss something? It is not clear who is in the data set. One indication of shaky research is a lack of clarity on this point. The first page should spell out EXACTLY who we are hearing from. There are a lot of people in this study, yes. But, as far as we know, 90% of them may be people who only stay in hotels. My guess is that ‘Hotel Only’ results would look different than ‘Airbnb Only’ results. (They also don’t say how many responses are in reference to Airline travel, the most despised segment of the travel industry. Why are those planners even included in this?) Again, if we don’t know who is answsering, how do we know how to weigh those answers?

I don’t mean to get to esoteric on this, but they don’t break down the answers from Brazil or Mexico or South Africa, etc. Is there a big difference? We do not know. My guess is that if every country’s responses were somewhat similar, they would have said “there was no discernable difference among countries”.

2.) WHAT IS BEING ASKED? … the wording of the questions is not helpful. It is much too generic. To get to actionable information on a specific topic, the question needs to probe. For example, “If you had the choice between two identical listings but one offered ‘sustainable options’, how much more would you pay?” Something like that.

I think the ‘non-refundable’ question is very, very hard to research. There are so many considerations, such as a supply and demand determination. I would never book a non-refundable room at the Dumpster Inn a month in advance. However, I WOULD book a non-refundable place in a highly desirable area that required me to do that or lose out. Our condo is generally rented six months to a year ahead of time.

We have strict cancellation, although people still can get their money back a few months ahead of time. Because our property is on Maui, a guest also has to plan flights and possibly their vacation plans. It is not practical to offer ‘totally refundable’. This might be unusual, but my point is that “Do you want 100% refundable?" as asked is dead-end research. That question requires some serious follow-up.

I do appreciate that they are doing surveys, I just wish they would do some that would really enlighten us. My opinion is that this was a ‘feel good’ survey. It feels good to Expedia to say “We asked”.

I would love to get in a room with them and have them document to me how much this survey helps owners.


I appreciate seeing the survey. Knowledge is power. Whether I agree with the contents is immaterial. The content is worth consideration. I now know it exists. I may have learned something. I may change my business practices- I may not. It gives me something to think about, not an absolute guide to how I should do business.


Oh, gosh @HostAirbnbVRBO thanks for this! I’m always looking for ways to tweak my listing and I never thought to add sustainability to the wording. Now I can mention my solar panels, and maybe the trash bags made from “Plant Based (sugar cane) materials instead of fossil fuel”. Sweet!


Oh my gosh Airhost Relax!! Why do you seem to take several posts as an attack?


My thoughts exactly. Choosing the sustainable options on a survey is mostly lip service. Some may be dead serious about using sustainability as a main criterion for choosing a rental, but I would bet that most automatically check those boxes on the survey to feel more virtuous.


And I have serious doubts that a guest would be willing to pay more because I compost and recycle and don’t provide single-use items.
Saying you’d be willing to pay more on some survey isn’t at all like choosing Listing A @$100/night vs Listing B at $80/night just because they list sustainable practices.

The only valuable info for hosts re advertising sustainable practices would be actual stats on how many hosts’ booking rates went up after they did this.

lol, and over half say it’s not.

how to heck would you know this just from making a booking with one sentence of chat?
I’d prefer my guests also align with my values too! And yet they have no concerns with wasting energy…

yes, that is what we hosts are dealing with.


:rofl: People seem to have a way of only paying attention to half of something.

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Nothing surprising in the survey.

This is complete BS. Most guests have only have one personal value in common: selfishness. But they want their host to have a different personal value: generosity.

I think an intern must have designed this survey and has no idea about how matching markets such as Airbnb/VRBO work.

In case they decide to ask the hosts as well, I want the following as a host:

  • same rates as a five star hotel
  • no refunds for any reason
  • guests should do all the cleaning
  • guests should leave me a five star review.

But guests are not going to give me this easily. So the guest and I settle somewhere in between.

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After coming back to this thread and seeing the rest of the comments, I descended into deep thinking mode. I would like to clarify that my original comment about “tweaking my listing” has nothing to do with appealing to guests or seeming to be eco-conscious. It has to do with trying to get a positive bump in the algorithm.

Also, from a guest/looking/booking perspective, having used both VRBO & Airbnb as a guest for years, I went through a hypothetical conversation in my head. Please note, I try to be a good steward of Earth’s resources; I pay a little extra for some things, a lot for others, avoid egregious acts against the ecosystem. However, if given a choice between two similar rentals, one offering a higher price to save a wee bit of the planet, not gonna lie, I would choose the lower price. Not gonna save the planet in 3 days on my own, but might save enough money to pay a bill. (As a host I have made a personal choice to spend more on certain items in my rental, but that is my choice. I don’t have to pass everything on to my guests. My wheelchair upgrades are enough as it is. That upgrade changed the whole nature of the place.) I guess maybe if I were making the decision on my own it might be different, though. I know my hubs wouldn’t go for it. On the other hand if they were the SAME price, I would choose eco-place.

Discretionary travel is bad for the environment/eco-system/climate change/energy consumption/whatever one wants to call it. I also try to make choices that are better for the environment, mostly because I like the way I feel about it. For anyone in the travel business to obsess about it seems hypocritical. I particuarly dislike members here judging others for things like coffee pods or travel size toiletries. People will live in a remote area that one can only accessed by driving or flying then pontificate about plastic trash bin liners. Strange.