How Airbnb is making it safer for solo travellers to book holidays

New in-app security functions will be offered to single guests staying in private rentals and shared rooms

Airbnb's new safety features include an option for solo guests to easily share their reservation details with friends and family. Photo: Henry Gillis / Unsplash
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Solo travellers booking accommodation on Airbnb can now use new safety features.

The world’s largest holiday listings website has added functions designed to support people travelling alone.

It includes in-app expert tips to help tourists stay safe and allows guests to easily share their reservation details with friends and family.

With just one click, a person can send their itinerary details to a designated person to let them know where they are going to be and for how long.

This includes all relevant information such as the listing address, reservation code, check-in and checkout dates.

Airbnb's new in-app experience is available for English-speaking travellers booking private rooms or shared spaces. Photo: Airbnb

The app will also prompt solo travellers to ask hosts questions, such as whether anyone will be available to assist during their stay if needed and if other people might be sharing the rental space.

It's currently being rolled out for English-speaking travellers booking private rooms or shared spaces. Airbnb has plans to extend the function to other languages and for entire home listings in the near future.

Solo traveller in a treehouse

According to the latest data from Airbnb, 26 per cent of all nights booked on the platform in 2021 were by solo travellers.

Digital nomads are increasingly among those booking, with more than 50 per cent of long-term stays booked during the first quarter of 2022 made by single travellers.

The new functions on the app are available for all solo travellers, regardless of gender.

“We recognise that female solo traveller safety is top of mind for the travel community right now," said an Airbnb representative.

"As we began developing the product, it became apparent that this could benefit all solo travellers, so the in-app experience will be made accessible to guests regardless of their gender identity."

Airbnb solo travellers can easily share their itinerary details with friends and family. Photo: Airbnb

Existing safety features available to all users remain, including a 24-hour hotline that guests can call to talk to trained safety agents and an in-app local emergency services function that allows people to contact police or ambulance services, even if they don't know the local telephone number.

All users can also add an emergency contact to their profile to help speed up the process if Airbnb needs to contact someone on their behalf.

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Updated: June 14, 2022, 7:51 AM