Peer-to-peer accommodation services change travel patterns in many ways

November 2, 2015, University of Eastern Finland
Peer-to-peer accommodation can be as comfortable as hotel accommodation. Credit: Terho Kontioinen

Have you ever used Airbnb or other peer-to-peer accommodation services when travelling? If yes, you are likely to travel more than you used to, you choose your destination from among a wider set of alternatives, and you are more active in your destination.

Peer-to-peer accommodation services such as Airbnb have changed in many ways, according to a recent study from the University of Eastern Finland and Washington State University. The study provides new insight into how the availability and use of peer-to-peer accommodation services affect patterns. The findings were published in Journal of Travel Research.

The study found that tourists are interested in peer-to-peer accommodation services due to social and financial reasons. Users of peer-to-peer accommodation services are often in social interaction with their hosts, and peer-to-peer accommodation services are a cost-effective alternative to, for example, hotels.

Financial savings achieved by using peer-to-peer accommodation services make it possible to broaden the selection of destinations and the number of trips, while the social aspects inspire people to travel more in general and to stay in their destination for a longer period of time. Financial savings - together with tips from hosts - also increase tourists' activeness in their destination.

From the viewpoint of destinations, the findings are extremely positive. The availability of peer-to-peer accommodation services in the increases the number of tourists, makes them stay for a longer period and increases the demand for tourism-related services and activities.

Extensive US and Finnish data

An extensive set of tourist data was collected for the study both in Finland and in the US.

In Finland, 1,246 persons took part in an online panel, and 295 of them had used peer-to-peer accommodation services. In the US, 799 persons completed an online survey, and 155 of them had used peer-to-peer accommodation services. The study focused on respondents who had used peer-to-peer accommodation services.

The popularity of peer-to-peer accommodation services has witnessed rapid growth throughout the world. For example, Airbnb offers accommodation services in 190 countries and in more than 34,000 cities. There are over 60 million Airbnb users around the world, and its popularity is not showing any signs of decline.

Explore further: Airbnb acquires travel planning tool Vamo

More information: I. P. Tussyadiah et al. Impacts of Peer-to-Peer Accommodation Use on Travel Patterns, Journal of Travel Research (2015). DOI: 10.1177/0047287515608505

Related Stories

Open peer review could result in better quality of peer review

September 29, 2015

Whether or not a research article has been peer reviewed openly can seemingly make a difference to the quality of the peer review, according to research carried out by BioMed Central's Research Integrity Group and Frank Dudbridge ...

Recommended for you

Where is the universe hiding its missing mass?

February 15, 2019

Astronomers have spent decades looking for something that sounds like it would be hard to miss: about a third of the "normal" matter in the Universe. New results from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory may have helped them ...

What rising seas mean for local economies

February 15, 2019

Impacts from climate change are not always easy to see. But for many local businesses in coastal communities across the United States, the evidence is right outside their doors—or in their parking lots.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.