How I’d improve Airbnb searches

We’ve been living out of Airbnbs for several months and have scheduled stays for several more and I really wish they’d upgrade their search game.

  • Allow users to sort their search results by price (low to high, high to low), guest rating (low to high, high to low), distance from landmarks in the search area (ideally landmarks would be identified in a list to choose from—see hotels.com for an example), nearest metro stop, bus station, airport, supermarket, restaurants, park to walk dog, specific address or a point the user chooses on the map).
  • Add more search criteria (Filters): ‘best discount for monthly stay’, ‘reviewers often mention the view, ‘good for long term stay’, or ‘convenient.’
  • Add a draw map feature for the search area, such as seen on realtor.com and Craigslist in the US. Allow the search map to be drawn over country borders and over bodies of water to encompass islands, cities split by rivers, etc.
  • Make all results strictly conform to user search terms. Search results currently (March, 2022) include some Airbnb’s that are more expensive than the search limit and ones that don’t have free parking, even if user specifies it in the search. 
  • Free Parking on Premises is ill-defined. In addition to returning several results labeled, ‘missing: free parking’, often listings that boast free parking actually mean street parking, some of which are only free at night, or listings that have a pay lot nearby. Users must to drill down to the comments to fully understand that the parking is. If the problem is that hosts don’t fill out the listing questionnaire information correctly, make sure that the host’s parking questionnaire section includes specific choices: free parking on premises, free street parking depending on availability, free street parking at night only, pay lot nearby (specify distance).  Parking costs can add up quickly and the kind of parking available should be clear.
  • Superhost whose property has no reviews.  This probably means that the host owns other properties in which s/he is a superhost.  If so, make it easy to see the other properties that the host owns, otherwise its either irrelevant or, worse, looks like a scam.

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