Airbnb changed the way the travel industry looked at travel. Much like Uber disrupted the taxi industry, the lodging industry has suffered against the short-term rental business. But one of the largest hotel chains in the world is looking to compete as Marriott launches a new venture.
Marriott International Competes with Airbnb
Homes & Villas is a new service offered by Marriott International with the mission of expanding its brand. Of course, there is the added bonus of competing with Airbnb. The short-term rental market has seen an incredible uptake in demand over the past years, more so due to COVID-19. With big chains cutting back, and the fear of large crowds, individual rentals became a go-to. Marriott International is now offering a new service meant to break into the short rental market and deepen its brand.
Pros of Homes & Villas
There are two big perks of this new service. First, Airbnb is more of a facilitator between the renter and rentee. What this inevitably causes is a lower standard of lodging. The regulation just isn’t there, and reviews are the only way to know what you’re getting. With a large company like Marriott International focusing on quality and luxury, you know what you’re getting with every booking.
Second, your Marriott rewards work with the bookings and can gain points when you book. You no longer have to choose between privacy and points when traveling.
Cons of Homes & Villas
The first obvious downside to Marriott’s new venture is price. While quality and luxury are always lovely, going this route will likely cost you more than a hotel stay and much more than an Airbnb. Most dwellings will run you $150 or more, and there is no discount for more extended stays. With Airbnb, a monthly stay typically gets you a deal, and you can stay for as low as $1500. Monthly visits with H&V will cost a considerable amount more.
The second downside is the cancellation policy. If we learned nothing else from the last two years, things happen, and no flight or vacation is guaranteed. The cancellation policy for H&V is one of the less reasonable out there. A refund is only given if canceled within 48 hours of booking.
This is a relatively new service, so some cons may get worked out in practice. But it is great to see some expansion in the short-term rental game. Only good things come to the consumer with competition.