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‘Whole trip’ service becomes Airbnb bigger than ever, but many want tougher regulations

Airbnb is taking on the tourism industry with an ambitious stretch and a star-studded open but it comes at a delicate occasion for the company

Airbnb is taking on the tourism industry by offering travellers tours and know-hows hosted by locals, an ambitious stretch which will allow people to contrive entire expeditions through the home-sharing site.

The redesigned app works for a dozen metropolis, 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, dramatizing, meat tasting, truffle hunting, burlesque dance lessons, mountain biking, samurai-sword grades and murder-mystery tours.

Brian Chesky, the companys CEO, realise the notice at the beginning of Airbnb Open, a three-day meet of employees, hosts and personalities in Los Angeles. If you want to travel, you basically end up on studies and research programme, Chesky said. We want to fix this.

Rory Carroll (@ rorycarroll7 2)

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

November 17, 2016

It will create a holistic wander event, said Chesky. This is not a tour. You participate. You are immersed … the issue was literally exactly the beginning.

The announcement came at a delicate hour 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 dimension marketplaces threatens to stall breakneck growing. It currently boasts 3m property directories in 191 countries.

Critics say that instead of ordinary people renting out spare areas in a benign culture and financial exchange, many hosts are commercial hustlers who fuel payment rises, ousters and gentrification a reality Airbnb supposedly blurs by withholding and rubbing data.

New York last month extended a statute to fine residents who rent out accommodations for illegal short-term bides. San Francisco draws legions register and can penalty Airbnb for rostering an unregistered property.

The next large-scale duel is in LA, where the city council will soon debate whether to strengthen rules.

A coalition of tenants, parish activists, labour governors and business friends is due to rally outside the companys jamboree this week to try to engage multitudes and influence metropoli authorities.

We are very concerned at how short term rents are perverting our housing marketplace and growing our rents, said James Elmendorf, of the advocacy group Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy( Laane ). So we are out there civilizing Airbnb multitudes about their responsibilities so theyre not only hearing from the company.

Airbnbs expansion into tours and know-hows will open multiple brand-new fronts for authorities around the world who are still battling with how to charge and regulate its short term rentals.

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

Chesky, who is at 35 one of the worlds youngest billionaires, channelled the minds of the Steve Jobs Apple product launches in Thursdays announcement, wearing all black and promising transformative altered in a slick give. Employees, plus some of the 200 columnists Airbnb winged in for the event, heartened and acclaimed.

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

Chesky legislation the companys move as entitling travelers to connect with other beings and genuine know-hows they would not otherwise have as tourists. The production showcased multitudes including an astro-photographer in LA, a jazz pianist in Havana and a lifestyle blogger in Nairobi.

Experiences can last-place a few hours or several days, said the CEO. Half are priced below $200. Everything powered by beings. The magical is in the people.

Chesky elicited the companys source 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 program, said. It has real potential to essentially change how travel and tourism investments works.

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

Property emcees compensate Airbnb a 3% commissioning. Know hosts compensate 20%. Those who signed up during a trial period the beginning of this year, and attended the LA event, lauded the collaboration.

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

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

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

The LA gathering includes seminars and shops with names like house empathy through community, leapings of religion: strategic risk-taking, interior design tips, noting your inner glad legion and has become a 5-star host. Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat, Pray, Love, will give a talk designation creative living beyond suspicion: jaunt with curiosity.

Airbnbs ambition and its legions evangelical fervor will chagrin detractors who accuse the company of driving up payments and breaking places by siphoning off rental parts for tourist legions, a critique heard in London, Amsterdam, Berlin and elsewhere.

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

Airbnb consumed by corporate belonging buyers who masquerade as “owners ” but are simply creating illegal hotels with no involve for Venice as a collect of neighborhoods, fitted 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
Philip Henrikson and Mary Anne Thomas are being dispossessed from their home in Venice, an Airbnb hotspot. Picture: Rory Carroll

Tourists were often loud and disorderly, said Thomas, standing in her garden. Parties in a neighboring room which towered over the bungalow gazed down as she spoke. Airbnb-ers, she said.

Airbnb repudiates deteriorating house crises in LA or elsewhere, saying it pays taxes which money low-income house and renders money an average of $7,500 per year which helps middle class legions pay their own payments and mortgages.

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

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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