Airbnb co-founder Brian Chesky has announced a series of plans to better serve Chinese travellers, particularly millennials.
In his remarks, Chesky unveiled Airbnb’s new Chinese brand name, announced the expansion of Trips and Experiences in China and discussed
Airbnb’s work to strengthen its global network of more than three million listings in more than 190 countries around the world.
Airbnb’s new brand name in China, Aibiying - or 爱彼迎 - translates as ‘welcome each other with love’ and reflects Airbnb’s mission.
The new brand is being rolled out across the product today and will be supported by a major marketing campaign in the coming months.
Airbnb is also bringing its latest innovation, Trips, to China with the launch of Airbnb Experiences in Shanghai.
Trips is Airbnb’s strategy to move beyond accommodation to offer unique and magical experiences across all areas of the trip.
Trips launches today in Shanghai with authentic and unique Experiences offered by locals – from learning about dough figurines (also known as Miansu), a 4,000 year old Chinese folk art that is rarely practiced today, to going behind-the-scenes of traditional Kun Opera.
Chesky said: “To better serve Chinese travellers, Airbnb will more than triple the size of its local workforce this year and double its investment in the market.
“China has the only Airbnb engineering centre outside of the United States and Airbnb expects to further boost the number of engineers in China in the next year.”
Airbnb has already made progress in tailoring its service to meet the needs of local users in China, from improved website translation to integration of local payment methods such as Alipay and sign up options such as WeChat, to providing 24×7 access to customer support in Mandarin.
Its next focus will be to rethink the core booking experience to go even further in meeting the needs of Chinese users.
Airbnb has also sought to partner with cities to help them maximise the benefits of home sharing and has signed agreements with the cities of Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chongqing and Guangzhou.