Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Airbnb and the car share side hustle

Type carbnb.com into any browser and you'll be redirected to airbnb.com. I was initially surprised but it makes perfect sense. Airbnb will most likely be rolling out their own car sharing service sooner or later. The same is probably true of other home sharing services but Airbnb tends to be on top of things (case in point, check out Airbnb Experiences).

At our airbnb in Santa Cruz, I estimate that 30% of our guests are out of state and would love to have a car waiting for them to use when they arrive. This is the main reason that care sharing held a certain appeal to me - a marriage made in heaven.

One challenge that this poses is the added cost for a guest to get from San Jose International or San Francisco International airport to Santa Cruz. The guest can find their own transportation (an Uber is about $45) or I need to come up with a strategy for leaving the car at an airport for pickup. The latter is probably more problematic than I care to deal with.

From the guest's perspective, they now have a one stop shop to communicate with regarding both their car rental and airbnb host.  The added cost for the car rental in our case would be about 20% over the daily airbnb rental (~$40 USD). We would most likely offer a 15% discount for the car rental for airbnb guests.

Since the two rentals are completely separate, there won't be any benefit from Airbnb's insurance policy. If/when Airbnb also offers a car sharing option, that will help streamline my operation.

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