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‘Whole trip’ service represents Airbnb big than ever, but numerous want tougher regulates

Airbnb is taking on the tourism industry with an ambitious swelling and a star-studded opening but it comes at a fragile day for the company

Airbnb is taking on the tourism industry by offering travellers outings and knowledge hosted by neighbourhoods, an ambitious swelling which will allow people to program entire errands 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 on Thursday.

Offerings include stargazing, surfing, sewing, food tasting, truffle hunting, burlesque dance exercises, mountain biking, samurai-sword classes and murder-mystery tours.

Brian Chesky, the companys CEO, cleared the bulletin at the start of Airbnb Open, a three-day amas of hires, emcees and fames in Los Angeles. If you want to travel, you mostly end up on studies and research project, Chesky said. We want to fix this.

Rory Carroll (@ rorycarroll7 2)

Brian Chesky unveils Airbnb’s next large-scale act: ‘experiences’. Customized tours. Already live. pic.twitter.com/ 7bO7J2R35I

November 17, 2016

It will create a holistic roam know-how, said Chesky. This is not a tour. You participate. You are immersed … the issue was literally just the beginning.

The announcement came at a fragile era for Airbnb. The colossus, valued at $30 bn, is eyeing a stock exchange debut but a rising tide of regulation and concern about the companys impact on property sells threatens to stall breakneck rise. It currently boasts 3m property listings in 191 countries.

Critics say that instead of ordinary people leasing out spare areas in a benign cultural and financial exchange, numerous hosts are commercial operators who fuel payment rises, evictions and gentrification a reality Airbnb allegedly blurs by withholding and rubbing data.

New York last-place month guided a law to fine residents who rent out accommodations for illegal short-term abides. San Francisco attains hosts registry and can fine Airbnb for rolling an unregistered dimension.

The next large-scale engagement is in LA, where the city council will shortly debate whether the government has strengthen rules.

A coalition of tenants, parish activists, exertion commanders and business friends is due to rally outside the companys jamboree this week to try to engage hosts and push municipality authorities.

We are very concerned at how short term payments are debasing our house marketplace and heightening our hires, said James Elmendorf, of the advocacy group Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy( Laane ). So we are out there educating Airbnb multitudes about their responsibilities so theyre not just hearing from the company.

Airbnbs expansion into tours and events will open multiple new fronts for governments around the world who are still wrestling with how to tax and regulate its short term rentals.

Opponents of Airbnb rally in New York, which last-place month extended a principle to fine residents who rent out suites for illegal short-term stands. Photograph: Shannon Stapleton/ Reuters

Chesky, who is at 35 one of countries around the world youngest billionaires, channelled the spirit of Steve Jobs Apple product propels in Thursdays announcement, wearing all black and promising transformative altered in a slick production. Hires, plus some of the 200 columnists Airbnb hovered in for the happen, heartened and saluted.

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

Chesky billed the companys move as entitling travelers to connect with other beings and genuine know-hows they would not otherwise have as tourists. The presentation showcased emcees 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 beings. The magical is in the people.

Chesky evoked the companys parentage in 2007 when he and co-founder Joe Gebbia started hosting beings 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 world programme, said. It has real potential to essentially alter how travel and tourism investments works.

Hosting could be a lifeline for people displaced by robotics and other financial pressures, said Lehane, a former political adviser to Bill Clinton and Al Gore.

Property multitudes compensate Airbnb a 3% commission. Know-how multitudes compensate 20%. Those who signed up during a trial period the beginning of this year, and had participated in the LA event, lauded the collaboration.

Its a boost to my business. I had the structure already, said Kike Correa, 26, who takes buyers paddleboarding, snorkeling and scuba diving in the Florida Keys.

Nicole Biondi, 39, has designed a assassination riddle tour in Cape Town, South Africa, priced $212, which starts with a hike up Table Mountain. Her first Airbnb purchasers heralded from Peru, Sweden, Ireland and Britain, she said.

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

The LA gathering includes seminars and seminars with designations like construct empathy through community, changes of sect: tactical risk-taking, interior design tips-off, knowing your inner happy legion and has become a 5-star host. Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat, Pray, Love, will give a talk designation inventive living beyond dread: trip with curiosity.

Airbnbs ambition and its hosts evangelical ardor will chagrin detractors who accuse the company of driving up rents and spoiling places by siphoning off rental groups for tourist mobs, a critique heard in London, Amsterdam, Berlin and elsewhere.

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

Airbnb is used by corporate belonging purchasers who masquerade as property owners but are simply developing illegal inns with no regard for Venice as a accumulation of places, fitted with neighbours and parish, said Mary Anne Thomas, 64, a librarian who is being ejected from the bungalow she shares with her husband and dog.

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

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

Airbnb repudiates degenerating house junctures in LA or elsewhere, saying it remunerates taxes which fund low-income house and affords money an average of $7,500 per year which helps middle class multitudes pay their own leases and mortgages.

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

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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