Airbnb looks to be heading down the social route, introducing a new feature that lets travelers share their stories.
The accommodation service is quietly testing the feature, which, similar to Snapchat’s offering, lets you showcase your travels through a collection of short videos.
Working on both mobile and web, the Travel Stories let viewers swipe through the videos that make up the presentations, with each clip lasting up to 10 seconds.
Viewers can also tap on links for further information about the featured location and, of course, the Airbnb property, if it’s included in the Travel Story. So, if you take a look at this one compiled by “Chelsea” during a trip to Havana in Cuba, we see 10 different posts documenting various aspects of her trip.
Click on the Havana links in the Travel Story and you’ll be taken to an Airbnb page featuring various Airbnb-led experiences that you can enjoy in the city. Other links appear according to the clip, each taking you to an Airbnb page with more information about what you’re watching.
Alternatively, you can scroll down the page to see all the links laid out together.
The feature is being tested with a select group of users, and at the current time only works for the iPhone.
A page on Airbnb’s website offers a few tips on how to create a Travel Story. It recommends aiming for 10 video clips per Story, all of which can be easily pulled from your camera reel.
You’re also able to add tags that create the links to other Airbnb pages related to the destination.
Once you’re done and you’re satisfied with the preview, you can post it in a tap.
The new feature, if it’s launched for the entire Airbnb community, certainly has the potential to make the service a lot more personal. It should also keep users locked into the site for longer as they spend time exploring what’s on offer while they plan their trip. Ultimately, Airbnb will hope that travelers’ experiences depicted in the Stories will encourage others to hit the “book” button for one of its many accommodation options or experiences.
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