Ready to connect with a community of travelers and locals interested in learning more about your world? Let’s dive into Airbnb’s quality standards for experiences for ways to showcase your strengths in your experience submission.
Hosts take travelers into their worlds, helping them feel like an insider, even if for just a few hours. Experiences in the Airbnb marketplace must meet Airbnb’s bar for quality; these standards set experiences apart from typical tours. To be published, an experience submission must demonstrate expertise, insider access, and connection. These standards help ensure that the market has high-quality experiences led by knowledgeable, hospitable hosts.
As you read more about these standards and think about your experience idea, here are a few things to keep in mind:
○ Consider not only the expertise you have of your subject matter, but also the unique perspective you can bring to this topic or activity.
○ Let your imagination run free; experiences should feature something that guests couldn’t easily do on their own. Try differentiating your experience from generic tourist activities.
○ The best experiences create meaningful human connections—how will you make sure your guests feel like they belong?
Do you have a passion for a craft, activity, and/or your community? When designing your experience idea and submitting for review, this is a great place to start! In addition to passion, an expert host should consider what unique experience, credentials, or perspective they have on the main subject matter of their activity. Be sure to make this clear in your experience submission.
Here are three examples of how you might explain your expertise on a subject matter, with differing levels of success:
“I love calligraphy!” This statement doesn’t quite explain the details of how or why you’re an expert on the craft.
“I’ve studied calligraphy for five years and recently started teaching my friends.” This statement gives some helpful insight into what qualifies you to lead this experience.
“I teach calligraphy at the SF Asian Arts Center. I recently spoke at the International Calligraphy conference on ‘Calligraphy in the Digital Age.’” This statement does a great job at demonstrating significant expertise in your subject matter.
Eleonora and Achref, of Cooking with Art!, have crafted an ‘About you’ section that does a great job highlighting their expertise.
About your host, Eleonora & Achref
Eleonora is a chef with over 15 years of international experience. She is a TV chef at Italia7 that loves sharing her knowledge with others. With passion she has followed her grandmother and mother steps, but she keeps updated, in fact beside her specialization as pastry chef, wine and food pairing, she is also a specialized Pizzaiolo. Her first cookbook has been realized in 2018.
Achref Chargui, considered one of the best Oud player, teaches music at the University of Tunis. Art director of El Jem World music Festival will share with you his knowledge and music and select the guests’ artist!
Do you have to be a master to host an experience? No! Just make sure to highlight what unique expertise you have that is relevant to the experience.
Another example from Anabel, host of Natural Dye Using Ancient Techniques in Mexico City, describes her expertise:
I’m a Mexican textile lover who studied fashion design and fiber arts in Barcelona. I came back to Mexico some years ago when I started learning natural dyes in Oaxaca where I fell in love with the vibrant hues of ancient textiles. Since then I have developed several projects including a brand of artisanal backpacks using some of the materials and methods we will cover in this workshop.
In the end, consider why you’re the perfect person to host this particular experience. Go deeper than the surface with personal stories and context that bring the experience to life. How do you define your expertise?
Experiences go beyond a typical tourist activities and guests are invited to actively participate in a host’s community or culture. Great experiences unlock places or activities that the average traveler wouldn’t likely discover on their own.
Consider offering access to something unique or otherwise inaccessible to the average visitor to increase your experience’s chances of being published on Airbnb. When submitting your experience, make sure to highlight what’s special about the locations you’ll visit with your guests.
I always start my tour by asking, ‘Why did you book this experience?’ People say that they were looking for an uncommon activity. What I offer them is something unique, something they couldn’t experience on their own. I tried to create a more interesting tour than what I saw out there already, and this has worked for me. – Gabriela, host of Get to know Little Africa
Share a special place, like a local’s only watering hole or a hidden neighborhood garden
○ Introduce guests to people, communities, or activities they wouldn’t otherwise have access to
○ Offer a unique twist or angle on a typical or common tourist activity
Marvin, the host of Backyard Beekeeping, provides unique access to his own backyard, and local community gardens where guests can tour beehives in Los Angeles.
Make sure to highlight your own connection to these places or communities in your submission. Ask yourself, why are they special to you, and why would your guests also find them interesting? Consider sharing a lasting memory that relates to these places.
A great Experience Host is dedicated to creating meaningful human connections. They go out of their way to make guests feel welcome and recognized. They are warm and thoughtful, creating moments of connection with their guests, and making them feel special along the way. If the host creates a good connection, guests will often arrive at an experience as strangers, and leave as friends.
When submitting your experience, highlight the ways you will consider the details and ensure that guests feel safe, engaged, and connected throughout the experience. This can range from the little gestures, like offering sunscreen on a sunny day, to bigger things, like creating an inclusive space for your guests to connect.
Here are some questions to ask yourself as you craft your experience idea:
○ How are guest needs like dietary considerations, accessibility, or safety concerns taken care of?
○ What might you do if there are unforeseen circumstances, like a change in weather?
○ How will you help guests connect and interact with each other on your experience?
○ How will you take into account the comfort levels of a wide spectrum of guests from many different cultures?
Remember, all experiences must meet these quality standards in order to make it onto the Airbnb marketplace. The way you communicate each one of these qualities in your experience page matters. Carefully highlight unique expertise, insider access, and connection in these sections:
☐ ‘About you’ – Remember to share why you are the best person to host this experience, how your expertise relates to the activity, and what makes you a thoughtful host.
☐ ‘What you’ll do’ and ‘Where you’ll be’ – Describe the unique access to locations or communities that you will provide—be specific! Anticipate questions guests may have, and have answers ready in advance.
☐ ‘What I’ll provide’ – Include anything special you will include in the experience, from drinks and snacks, to tickets that give guests access to an event.
☐ ‘What should guests bring with them’ and ‘What else do guests need to know ’ – These are great spots to identify and anticipate your guests’ needs and provide materials that will make them comfortable.