Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Plum Guide - Putting a Luxury Layer on Airbnb

A year ago or so I was in an art gallery, and a posh voice behind me said:

"The problem with Airbnb is that you're reliant on someone else's definition of a comfortable bed."

& that's the problem with Airbnb.  As much as I love it, there are often a few 'quirky' things about the places you stay; things that you don't want to write in the comments because it would be churlish, but you would mention to friends who were looking to stay there.

This is essentially the service The Plum Guide performs.  It finds the best of the properties on Airbnb and other rental sites, using 100 criteria to make sure that everything works, everything is clean and so on, and then offers you just these.

Yes, it's more expensive, but you get what you pay for.  Some of the properties look both stunning and interesting - have a look at Hackney for example.

I can imagine a similar 'luxury layer' on other parts of the sharing economy, and other parts of the DIY online experience.  Uber started off as the luxury layer with town cars, and went mass market, but there could be a business curating the best of other services.  For example Groupon was killed by flakey spas etc, who could not be checked by Groupon, but how about a luxury version that only offered the good stuff?  Or a luxury 'ZipCar' car-sharing scheme?

See more about The Plum Guide in this profile

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