Airbnb goes after business traveller, seals deal with Concur

It was only a matter  of time before Concur and Airbnb formed some sort of partnership and today the wait is over.

Back in April, Concur revealed use of the peer-to-peer accommodation platform by Concur customers has quadrupled every year since 2010 and was on track to hit $1 million in sales for the quarter.

Details are as follows. Users of Concur TripLink,  a solution that captures data from bookings made outside of the corporate booking tool, will be able to directly book Airbnb accommodation.

Via the technology, expense reports will be pre-populated and duty of care requirements met, according to a statement. These two elements are important from both a traveller safety perspective as well as complete visibility on spend and management information data.

The statement goes on to say that Airbnb has also partnered directly with businesses to launch the Business Travel on Airbnb service and worked with Salesforce to shape its direction.

Interesting to note that it is the new economy companies that have so far signed up including Evernote and Lyft.

Airbnb says that nearly 10% of its customers are travelling for business already and the company clearly sees further growth from the segment.

The integrated Airbnb-TripLink service will be made available in the autumn.

Questions going forward include how many of the 70% of Fortune 100 companies that Concur works with will be likely to adopt use of Airbnb as part of a travel programme?

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About the Writer :: Linda Fox

Linda worked at tnooz from September 2011 to June 2018 in roles including senior reporter, deputy editor and managing editor.

 

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  1. murray harrold

    This is of some concern. Certainly for rental, regulations require fire retardent materials, fire doors, ‘ealth and safety checks and so on and so forth. Hotels and most “legacy” home/ flat rentals follow these regulations (always detractors, of course) So one can understand that there is a ceratin resentment from the tarditional rental types and hotels. Let’s face, the fire regs etc are there for a damned good reason.

    With most hotels (especially groups) you know what you will get. a Holiday Inn, Days Inn, Hilton, Sheraton etc you know what you will get and you know that a standard will be met. Rent of any of these sites – you really have no benchmark standard. Fine, it’s cheap.

    And who are you renting from, I wonder? I hope Airbnb do well, they do some good, well priced stuff. That said, there has to be responsibility – people must know where the bucks stops (as they say)

     
  2. DanG

    The duty of care issues are, I suppose 2-fold:

    1. Knowing where your employees are staying and how to locate them in the event of a crisis – I imagine this is what is meant by, “Via the technology… duty of care requirements [will be] met”

    2. The other piece, though, is employee safety which can’t be solved by technology. To solve this you’d need changes to the building regulation code (i.e. this is now not a home but a rental property therefore are there sufficient fire safety and prevention measures) and a company policy on whether it is ok for employees to rent a room in a house shared with strangers or whether you would mandate that they could only stay in flats where no-one else was staying. I would guess that most companies would prefer their employees not to be sharing a house with strangers.

    Airbnb has reached an agreement with the City of Portland where owners will be able to rent their properties for short-term rentals so long as they are inspected by the Portland building inspectors, the owner has informed the neighbours and paid 180 dollars for a license, which seems like a pragmatic solution to most of the objections.

    I’m sure the local hoteliers don’t like it though…

     
  3. murray harrold

    I do like Airbnb and have used it myself for business travel clients. Does worry one a little bit though. The whole “responsibility” thing on this (and on other website articles) is summarised as simply “duty of care requirements met” . Really? Is that it? A huge conglomerate with 1000’s of staff travelling will simply say “Oh! That’s okay, the requirements are met?”.

    In another article, there is also the matter of state or regional legislation. Indeed, one article went so far as to suggest that a large online service provider could become big enough to, basically, ignore local rules and mentions Uber and Virginia, USA as an example.

    Legislation and rules are put in place for a reason and (usually) by a democratically elected body. Ergo, they must be followed (or at least, paid lip-service to) one cannot advocate that any orgainsation can grow large enough to ignore the local legislature. Certainly, a large corporation should not actively go down that route. One can endevour to change rules one does not like, not just ignore them. That would be a dark and dangerous path.

     
    • Linda Fox

      Lots of people will be thinking that Murray and we’ll likely find out more in the coming days and weeks. But, you’re right a huge corporation is not just going to sign up without taking a serious look at the duty of care implications.

      As to the other point about local legislation, that story is ongoing. Lots of cities are trying to ban Uber and Airbnb is having to tackle its own legal battles such as its recent agreement to pass over host data to New York officials and removing quite a few listings from the site.

       
 
 

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