Traveling with friends is great and all, but when it comes to splitting the bill, even the closest of friends can become … ferocious. After all, we are told never to mix money with buddies, right? And now, Airbnb is hoping it can help you avoid those awkward conversations and save your friendships. It basically allows you to split payments, much like you would do with Uber or Lyft, and it is certainly been a long time coming.
Thanks to Airbnb’s acquisition of Tilt in February, it looks as though it is finally getting easier to share the cost of your vacation lodgings. This will likely prove particularly useful for those traveling in large groups and renting large (often expensive) properties. Rather than just having the most fiscally responsible member of a friend group deal with the entirety of the cost from the onset, you can now split the fun and the finances from day one.
According to The Next Web, Airbnb is starting to test the split payments feature with a “small group of homes starting today,” but the hope is that the tool will be more widely available later on this year. As Airbnb spokesperson, told the publication, “We’re currently testing a way to split the cost of a trip on the Airbnb platform. This is a small, initial pilot — our goal is to make it even easier to use Airbnb to travel with friends and family.”
While this is certainly a boon for travelers, it is also a strategic move on Airbnb’s part. After all, some properties may have previously been cost prohibitive if only one person was expected to put down a credit card. But now that multiple people can foot the bill at the same time, renting a $5,000-per-night villa may be more within reach.
That said, it could also encourage hosts to up their prices a bit, seeing as homes can now be seen as more of a per-person cost instead of an upfront money dump. Regardless, the feature still has not rolled out in full yet, so we will have to see what effects it ultimately has in the months to come.
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