Airbnb’s CEO Says ‘There Is Clearly a Revolution Happening in Crypto’
By Kevin Helms
The CEO of Airbnb, Brian Chesky, asked on Twitter earlier this week, “If Airbnb could launch anything in 2022, what would it be?”
On Tuesday, he revealed that he received 4,000 suggestions, noting that the most popular one is for his company to accept crypto payments. He added, “Our existing payments volume = $336 billion processed since 2013,” noting:
Crypto payments is inclusive of a variety of token ideas.
Other top suggestions include clear pricing displays, a guest loyalty program, updated cleaning fees, more long-term stays and discounts, better customer service, and “commercial spaces (kitchens, co-working).” While specifically confirming that Airbnb is looking into commercial spaces, the CEO noted:
Already working on most, will look into others now.
Airbnb operates an online marketplace in the travel industry. According to its website, there are currently more than 5.6 million listings worldwide. Since its launch in 2007, Airbnb has served more than 1 billion customers and more than 4 million hosts have listed their properties on the platform.
The current payment options Airbnb offers in most countries are Visa, Mastercard, Amex, JCB, and “debit cards that can be processed as credit cards.” Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Paypal are also accepted. Cryptocurrency is currently not a payment option on Airbnb.
Chesky was asked in November last year whether Airbnb is considering accepting cryptocurrency. He replied:
We are definitely looking into it. Absolutely. Like the revolution in travel, there is clearly a revolution happening in crypto.
Noting that “The founder of Coinbase was an early employee of ours,” Chesky revealed, “We have been following the space for quite a long time.”
The executive further opined: “The key is when regular people understand how the new technology improved their lives, beyond the initial excitement. I’m really excited about certain applications that regular people could use to live a better daily life.”
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