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‘Whole trip’ service obligates Airbnb big than ever, but many want tougher conventions

Airbnb is taking on the tourism industry with an ambitious expansion and a star-studded launch but it comes at a fragile meter for the company

Airbnb is taking on the tourist industry by offering travellers excursions and experiences hosted by neighbourhoods, an ambitious stretch which will allow people to strategy entire expeditions through the home-sharing site.

The redesigned app works for a dozen municipalities, including London, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Paris, Tokyo and Nairobi, and will spread to dozens more next year, and eventually thousands, the company said here on Thursday.

Offerings include stargazing, surfing, sewing, meat tasting, truffle chase, burlesque dance exercises, mountain biking, samurai-sword categorizes and murder-mystery tours.

Brian Chesky, the companys CEO, formed the notice in the early stages of Airbnb Open, a three-day assembly of hires, hosts and luminaries in Los Angeles. If you want to travel, you mostly end up on a research activity, Chesky said. We want to fix this.

Rory Carroll (@ rorycarroll7 2)

Brian Chesky unveils Airbnb’s next big-hearted stuff: ‘experiences’. Customized tours. Already live. pic.twitter.com/ 7bO7J2R35I

November 17, 2016

It will create a holistic travelling ordeal, said Chesky. This is not a tour. You participate. You are immersed … this is literally just the beginning.

The announcement came at a delicate experience for Airbnb. The colossus, valued at $30 bn, is eyeing a stock exchange introduction but a rising tide of regulation and concern about the companys impact on belonging markets threatens to stall breakneck growing. It currently boasts 3m owned listings in 191 countries.

Critics say that instead of ordinary people hiring out spare areas in a benign culture and financial exchange, many legions are commercial operators who fuel rent rises, ousters and gentrification a reality Airbnb reportedly blurs by withholding and massaging data.

New York last-place month elapsed a statute to penalty residents who rent out suites for illegal short-term stays. San Francisco does legions registry and can fine Airbnb for registering an unregistered property.

The next large-hearted battle is in LA, where the city council will shortly dispute whether to strengthen rules.

A coalition of tenants, community activists, labor chairmen and business allies is due to rally outside the companys jamboree this week to try to engage legions and influence metropoli authorities.

We are very concerned at how short term leases are demoralizing our casing grocery and raising our rents, said James Elmendorf, of the advocacy group Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy( Laane ). So we are out there educating Airbnb hosts about their responsibilities so theyre not just hearing from the company.

Airbnbs expansion into tours and suffers will open multiple brand-new fronts for experts around the world who are still wrestling with how to imposition and regulate its short term rentals.

Opponents of Airbnb rally in New York, which last month passed a statute to fine local residents who rent out apartments for illegal short-term abides. Image: Shannon Stapleton/ Reuters

Chesky, who is at 35 one “of the worlds” youngest billionaires, channelled the minds of the Steve Jobs Apple product propels in Thursdays announcement, wearing all pitch-black and promising transformative altered in a slick presentation. Hires, plus some of the 200 writers Airbnb piloted in for the happening, cheered and applauded.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Ashton Kutcher will spray Hollywood glitz when they address some of the 7,500 legions on Saturday.

Chesky statute the companys move as empowering travelers to connect with other people and authentic knows they would not otherwise have as tourists. The exhibition showcased multitudes including an astro-photographer in LA, a jazz pianist in Havana and a lifestyle blogger in Nairobi.

Experiences can last a few hours or several days, said here CEO. Half are priced below $200. Everything powered by parties. The magic is in the people.

Chesky conjured the companys root in 2007 where reference is and co-founder Joe Gebbia started hosting people on an airbed in their San Francisco apartment, a real-life Silicon Valley fairytale.

Its the next really big chapter for us, Chris Lehane, Airbnbs head of global program, said. It has real potential to fundamentally change how travel and tourism investments works.

Hosting could be a lifeline for people displaced by robotics and other economic coerces, said Lehane, a former political consultant to Bill Clinton and Al Gore.

Property emcees pay Airbnb a 3% commissioning. Experience emcees offer 20%. Those who signed up during a trial period earlier this year, and were represented at the LA event, lauded the collaboration.

Its a elevate to my business. I had such structures already, said Kike Correa, 26, who takes purchasers paddleboarding, snorkeling and scuba diving in the Florida Keys.

Nicole Biondi, 39, has designed a slaughter mystery tour in Cape Town, South africans, priced $212, which starts with a hike up Table Mountain. Her first Airbnb buyers applauded from Peru, Sweden, Ireland and Britain, she said.

Chuck McCarthy, an L-Abased performer who supplements his income by marching beings, said he was open to becoming a host. If Airbnb reached out to me as The People Walker, Id definitely think about it.

The LA gathering includes forums and shops with deeds like house empathy through parish, changes of faith: tactical risk-taking, interior design gratuities, observing your inner glad host and has become a 5-star emcee. Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat, Pray, Love, will give a talk designation creative living beyond anxiety: trip with interest.

Airbnbs ambition and its legions evangelical ardor will chagrin detractors who accuse the company of driving up hires and ruining neighborhoods by siphoning off rental groups for tourist multitudes, a criticism hear in London, Amsterdam, Berlin and elsewhere.

In LA, activists say Venice, the citys bohemian coastal parish, is the worst affected: an Airbnb hotspot where rents have spiked 39% between 2011 and 2015.

Airbnb consumed by corporate belonging buyers who masquerade as property owners but are simply developing illegal hotels with no consider for Venice as a collection of vicinities, filled with neighbors and community, said Mary Anne Thomas, 64, a librarian who is being expelled from the bungalow she shares with her husband and dog.

Philip Henrikson and Mary Anne Thomas are being evicted from their house in Venice, an Airbnb hotspot. Image: Rory Carroll

Tourists were often thunderous and disruptive, said Thomas, standing in her yard. Parties in a neighboring home which towered over the bungalow gazed down as she communicated. Airbnb-ers, she said.

Airbnb repudiates deteriorating dwelling junctures in LA or elsewhere, saying it pays taxes which money low-income home and provides cash an average of $7,500 per year which facilitates middle class hosts pay their own hires and mortgages.

Its a platform that was created to keep parties in their homes, said Lehane, the head of world-wide program. Gentrification and homelessness had wider, deeper makes, he said. Were talking about socio-economic veers going back 10 years.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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