Airbnb wants to help travelers do more than just find accommodation. As the company teased at its annual conference in November, it is working on building a flight tool.
According to a report by Bloomberg on Monday, Airbnb is “developing a service for booking air travel.” The service, known simply as “Flights,” is expected to launch within the next 18 months, although it is unclear how exactly Airbnb is going to pursue development. The company may choose to buy an already-existent online travel agency or license data from a flight information provider.
Airbnb’s expansion into flight search could pose a threat to already-existent flight search engines like Priceline and Expedia, although the companies seem nonplussed about the home-sharing service’s expansion. At a press conference last month, Steve Hafner, CEO of KAYAK, said he was “not really worried about Airbnb getting into flights.”
Last month, Airbnb launched Airbnb Trips, meant to help guests once they’ve already landed at their destination. The service, currently in 12 different cities, offers guests activities like violin-making in Paris or marathon running in Kenya. Airbnb eventually hopes to offer the ability to book restaurants or
The move to control more of the travel experience comes as cities around the world are cracking down on short-term rental laws. Major cities like New York and San Francisco are still battling the home-sharing service on its breach of short-term rental laws.