Airbnb is taking a giant leap in the Asian market, launching services in China under a new name: Aibiying” (爱彼迎).
According to the company, CEO Brian Chesky wants to empower Chinese millennials with an “alternative way to travel”.
It adds that there are already more than 80 000 listings in the country, a figure which has the potential to grow exponentially.
The new name translates as ‘welcome each other with love’, and will be strongly marketed in coming months.
Airbnb’s first ‘Trips’ experience in the country with the largest population in the world will take visitors on a tour of Shanghai, getting them close to the culture and people of the city.
“Trips launches today in Shanghai with authentic and unique Experiences offered by locals,” says the company. “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.”
The accommodation giant plans to triple its workforce in China while simultaneously doubling its investment.
“There’s a whole new generation of Chinese travellers who want to see the world in a different way,” assets Chesky. “We hope that Aibiying and our Trips product strikes a chord with them and inspires them to want to travel.”