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Airbnb makes it easier to find a place to stay with your friends

Engadget Engadget 8/06/2016 Nathan Ingraham

Airbnb addressed the problem of racist hosts at the beginning of its OpenAir conference today, but the event is primarily focused on new technology and products. As such, VP of technology Mike Curtis quickly took the stage to announce three new products: group collaborative wish lists, an improved booking process for business travelers and multi-party reviews for when a group of guests stay at a property.

To most users of Airbnb, the collaborative wish are probably be the most notable new feature. For a while now, you've been able to book a place on Airbnb and then invite other guests to view the details for the stay. But now, you can get your friends involved earlier in the search process and have multiple users save different homes to a shared wish list. From there, you can vote on your favorite option; once you book, the property will be shared with everyone's account so your friends can see the details of your final choice.

The multi-party review system builds on the concept of group trips. Previously, hosts could only rate or review the single person who actually booked the property, even if multiple other people stayed at the house. Now, a host can write a review that applies to all the guests in your group; hopefully you stay with respectable friends, otherwise your reputation could take a hit. Of course, for both of these features, your friends will need Airbnb accounts to join in the fun.

The last new feature is more focused on business travelers, something Airbnb says is a core part of its business -- in fact, the company says that business travel has tripled on Airbnb in 2016 so far. The new third-party booking feature will let another authorized individual (like a company's travel manager) complete a booking on behalf of an Airbnb user. The company already sees 11 percent of Airbnb useres booking for another individual, so this feature should ease the friction there. All of these new features should roll out immediately.

Airbnb

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