Airbnb has announced and launched Online Experiences, a platform that allows hosts to earn money by using Zoom to show off their experiences.
Airbnb is hosting free Zoom accounts for those who want to take part in this platform, as well as offering creative support. They are approved through a submission process that takes place on Airbnb’s website, and this process takes around two to four weeks for a submitted experience to be approved. Any given experience is required to be 90 minutes or less.
This new platform is an offshoot of the Experiences platform the brand launched in 2016, which allowed travelers to see different activities and events. However, due to the Coronavirus outbreak, in-person experiences have been suspended through April 30, at least.
“Human connection is at the core of what we do,” said Catherine Powell, head of Airbnb Experiences, in a statement. “With so many people needing to stay indoors to protect their health, we want to provide an opportunity for our hosts to connect with our global community of guests in the only way possible right now, online.”
The company has also partnered with local organizations to curate free experience for seniors that are isolated, and they are as follows: Amigos de Los Mayores (an organization that addresses unwanted and social isolation among seniors in Spain), the National Council on Aging (an organization that helps those in the U.S. over 60) and SAGE (a United States organization dedicated to improving the lives of older LGBT people).
“Millions of elders aren’t able to go outside and risk their health due to the current crisis and need activities to help them stay connected to the world around them,” said Michael Adams, CEO of SAGE, in a statement. “Through our partnership with Airbnb, SAGE is able to give older members of LGBT communities across the country an opportunity to not only meet other people, but also learn a new hobby and travel to nearly anywhere around the world, all from the safety of their home. This is what partnership and connection is all about.”
Due to all the cancellations of travel, Airbnb has also previously announced it would pay $250 million to help those who have faced cancellations. The company said it would pay 25 percent of what the host would normally receive. The company also created a $10 million Superhost Relief Fund, which is for Superhosts who rent out their house and need help paying their rent or mortgage.