Summer 2022 is the season of travel, no doubt about it. This is the first time in over two years that fully vaccinated people can (for the most part) tour the world confidently and without major restrictions. The fact that most of us are still working from home doesn’t hurt either. The nomadic lifestyle is calling, and the wanderlust-fueled adventurers are answering that call.
Of course, an essential part of travel is where you decide to post up during your trip. We love hotels, but sometimes it’s nice to stay in your own space or discover an ultra-unique accommodation that’s an experience all on its own. Airbnb offers millions of homes worldwide for luxury travelers, budget adventurers, solo wanderers, and everyone in between. And now Airbnb is taking its platform up a notch with user-friendly updates and safeguarding policies.
The booking platform just launched its Airbnb 2022 Summer Release, which is introducing some of the biggest enhancements to Airbnb over the past 10 years. As more people are living abroad and jet-setting around the globe, the platform is adjusting its interface and features to evolve alongside tourism trends.
“The way people travel has changed forever,” said Brian Chesky, CEO and Co-Founder of Airbnb. “That’s why we’re introducing the biggest change to Airbnb in a decade.”
Available in the U.S. starting today and rolling out worldwide this week, the Summer Release updates include Airbnb Categories, Split Stays, and AirCover. We’re breaking down what each of these new features is all about below.
Now instead of searching for where to stay by just the location, you can also search for a specific style of accommodations. With Airbnb Categories, you can discover millions of unique homes you never knew existed. There are 56 categories that organize homes based on their style, location, or proximity to a travel activity (such as surfing).
Some categories include camping, caves, luxe, golfing, castles, off-the-grid, vineyards, amazing views, and design, which highlights impressive architectural options like homes curated by well-renowned architects or properties featured in popular design magazines. There’s even a category titled “OMG!,” which features the wackiest, most unique properties on an Airbnb.
If you’re planning on staying in a destination for more than a week and want to check out a few different properties, you’ll want to use the Split Stays feature. This innovative feature allows you to split your trip between two homes. When searching for a specific destination, Split Stays automatically appear in your search results.
Split Stays also appear within 14 categories — including camping, national parks, skiing, and surfing — so you can actually stay in two destinations as part of a single longer trip. Once you select a Split Stay, you’re guided through an easy-to-use interface to book each stay, one home at a time. It’s a useful tool for digital nomads and long-term vacationers alike.
AirCover, according to the platform, is the most comprehensive protection in travel. AirCover is included in every booking, and it represents the biggest upgrade to Airbnb’s customer service in a decade. With this feature, you’re covered by four different protections every time you stay on Airbnb:
- Booking Protection Guarantee: If a Host needs to cancel your booking within 30 days of check-in, Airbnb will find you a similar or better home or refund you.
- Check-In Guarantee: If you can’t check into your home and the Host cannot resolve the issue, Airbnb will find you a similar or better home for the length of your original stay or refund you.
- Get-What-You-Booked Guarantee: If at any time during your stay you find your listing isn’t as advertised, you’ll have three days to report it and Airbnb will find you a similar or better home or refund you.
- 24-hour Safety Line: If you ever feel unsafe, you’ll get priority access to specially-trained safety agents, day or night.
AirCover has been designed directly into the Airbnb app and website, making it easy for you to contact an agent and resolve issues quickly. Airbnb created a team of specially trained agents for last-minute rebooking assistance and expanded its 24-hour safety line to cover 16 languages.