The official DAY 1 of the 2016 Airbnb Open in LA started with a mighty long line. Was Justin Bieber in town? Luckily, no. The long line were hosts waiting to get into the Orpheum Theater to hear Brian Chesky’s keynote. Now, Brian Chesky might not be the prince of pop, but he’s the co-founder of the most successful home sharing platform on the planet: Airbnb. (drop mike).
So, we happily joined the queue like good little soldiers and weathered the wait. The event was by invitation only. This was due to the high demand and the Orpheum not being able to accommodate all 6k hosts attending this year's Airbnb Open in LA. SOLD OUT! Not an open seat in the house! Bieber, who?
Two Ships… It was the only time I saw Chip Conley face-to-face and not up on a stage.
Rachel Indek, fellow host and a member of the Facebook Group “The Hosting Journey.”
Brian Chesky’s announcement of Trips & Experiences was the big takeaway from the conference. You can view the keynote below:
And here is my crooked Facebook Live of the recap:
What are trips and experiences?
Per Brian, “Trips are homes, experiences, and places designed to be magical and easy.”
EXPERIENCES and PLACES:
Hand-crafted experiences for guests to immerse themselves in the local community offered by local hosts. The experiences can be about food, working out, walks, watch the stars, and more, and they can last for a few hours or multi-day immersive tours. All offered by hosts.
A new way for hosts to make a bit more money.
These curated experiences are currently only being offered by hosts in the following 12 major cities:
Over 50 cities next year, aiming to eventually be in every city around the world. I wonder when New York will make the list?
Airbnb will eventually also offer flights, car rentals, and more.
Brian finished his presentation by explaining that everything they do will be powered by people.
“Travel isn’t about where you go but about who you can become.”
In addition to Brian’s keynote, I saw Nate Blecharczyk, co-founder of Airbnb, give a press presentation about the changes to the dashboard and app.
Here is my video recap:
Some of the revisions to the dashboard and app include:
You can edit your saved messages: personalize your templates.
- You can send a photo to your guests: send a photo of your lockbox or any other information easier to show than tell.
- Research your messages by words: you remember the conversation of the guest who asked for those dates, but you don’t remember the name of the person.
- Easier to co-host by sharing information.
Other highlights include:
Women over 60 are the fastest growing HOST demographic.
Do you keep track of your earnings?
People start hosting because of money, but they continue because of the experiences they have.
Our night ended with a meet up with the NY hosts and then dinner with hosts Tammi Simms, Alex Nigg, Adrian, Jodie Wilmer, and Robert Nagi. After having a Facebook, skype friendship, it was fantastic to finally meet Jodie and Rob in person. Skype is good, but face-to-face is so much better!
The Supremes! You decide who’s Diana Ross.