There is plenty of confusion and misinformation online about the Airbnb Affiliate Program.
Many people wonder, does Airbnb have an affiliate program that pays people when they refer customers to their platform?
Let me clear the air for you.
First of all, I want to make this clear. Airbnb Affiliate and Airbnb referral programs are two separate entities. They are not to be confused or mixed with each other.
Here is a brief history of the various programs that Airbnb has had so far.
Airbnb had one affiliate program which was shut down in 2015. They restarted the program in 2017 and the reason there is so much confusion online about Airbnb affiliate is the fact that there is very little information available about the programs officially.
But don’t worry, we will clarify everything for you and show what exactly is available from Airbnb affiliate program.
There are four ways in which Airbnb allows someone to earn money through the platform. These are:
- Airbnb Affiliate program for everyone: Refer a guest program (Pays Travel Credit)
- Airbnb affiliate program for hosts (pays money)
- Airbnb Associates Program (pays money)
- Airbnb Affiliate Program for Publishers (pays money
Airbnb Affiliate Program for Everyone: Refer a guest program
There are no restrictions on who can join the guest referral program in the Airbnb affiliate. You have to create an account on Airbnb and invite people who don’t have an account on Airbnb using a specially generated affiliate link.
The people who join Airbnb using your affiliate link will get $45 off their first booking
When a stay is completed by people you have referred for the first time, you’ll get a $30 credit.
People who have signed up on Airbnb should have joined via your referral link.
The duration of their stay can’t exceed 28 days.
Airbnb referral program for Hosts
You convince your friends and family to let out a room on Airbnb and when they do so and complete their first booking, you are paid.
There is nothing at the moment for people who host using your link other than the fact that they help you make some money because they are friends and family members.
Your commission for referring differs from place to place across the world and depending on the popularity of the city your hosts are in. You can make between $75-$600 for every referral that converts into a stay.
Who is eligible to take part in this?
- You can refer only personal connections
- You can’t publish referral links on coupon sites and Reddit
- All the referred hosts must be fresh, first-time hosters on Airbnb
- The people you have referred for hosting are allowed 150 days to complete a booking from the time they are invited by you to join Airbnb. You get your referral money only when they do the same within the given time.
- The first booking should have a value of minimum $100 dollars or equivalent in local currency.
Airbnb Associates program (Payment in money)
The latest in the line-up of affiliate programs for Airbnb, this program was launched in May 2020.
Named Airbnb Associates, this is a program that pays you for promoting homestays to travellers.
It just requires you to have a website with visitors to it. However, there is no minimum requirement of traffic to your website and no long forms to fill. All you need to do is to go to https://www.airbnb.com/associates and click on “Get Started”. Your account gets created and activated immediately.
There is no special benefit for people who reserve a place using the link provided by you. However, you as a marketer, may give them some bonuses inside your articles if you want. This is up to you.
You get 30 % of Airbnb service fee every time someone reserves a stay with your referral link.
Who is eligible to take part in this?
- At the moment to join this program anyone can join this program
- You can’t remove Airbnb branding from any of the material provided by Airbnb for use.
- You get can’t use the advertising material provided by Airbnb to run paid advertisements
- You can’t use the referral links to book your own travel
Airbnb Affiliate Program for Publishers
This can be called the most elite and secretive affiliate program of Airbnb as the specifics of this program are only known to a select few.
It is safe to say that the average website will never make it into this program such is the strict eligibility criteria for this website.
Who is eligible to take part in this?
A minimum of 1 million subscribers should be there to your app or website. The content on your website or app must be primarily related to the travel or hospitality industry.
Your audience must be such that has a maximum likelihood to book places to stay or host their houses.
How can you join?
You need to submit your application to – https://affiliate.withairbnb.com/
How to Promote Airbnb through Affiliate Marketing
There are different ways to make money online with Airbnb. Affiliate marketing is obviously the best one of those ways.
Affiliate marketing is the process of promoting other people’s products or services for a commission. (you get paid)
In this case, we want to promote either Airbnb as a platform or specific Airbnb listings in order to make money online.
Affiliate marketing can be done in a lot of ways but the easiest one is Blogging – You can literally have a blog about anything related to travel to promote an Airbnb listing.
Some of the most popular forms of content that can attract attention will be an Airbnb experiences blog where you write about your experiences with Airbnb while travelling to different places.
Share your experience and knowledge to grow a website on travelling and then Airbnb will pay you money to promote it.
You could also have a blog about travel tech and travel gear while using Airbnb or maybe share your Airbnb secrets, little-known nuggets of information that will help travellers.
Make it a point to write SEO content and accompany that with beautiful, eye-catching photos and videos where possible.
Social media has an unprecedented reach and it is up to you to utilize this reach with effective promotion strategies. Travel is associated with great photography and factual content. Combine both and you have a winning recipe on your hands.
Ideally have a separate Facebook Page with very engaging cover photos and a hard-to-ignore call-to-action.
Also, publish funny and engaging content that is not related to your brand. One quick tip here is that you should make sure your address and phone number are prominently visible.
Use the right hashtags on Instagram. Increase your chances of getting “reposted” by publishing high-quality and engaging content. Don’t forget to use the #airbnb because the Airbnb account has over 2 million followers who also share their favourite posts. Who knows, you might end up being part of someone’s posts?
When it comes to paid ads, targeted ads work the best as they give you the option of targeting people based on their geographic location and other criteria such as age groups or professions.
Ideally irrespective of the social platform, do not choose a huge target audience as chances are likely that your ad will not be seen by many or else it will be seen by people to whom they don’t matter.
Use a Facebook Pixel to track your visitors and although not a must-have a Facebook chatbot is a nice thing to have to promote your Airbnb property.
Airbnb Competitors/Alternatives with Affiliate Programs
Home rentals and rooms for vacation rentals are not the exclusive domain of Airbnb and there are sites where you can find the same accommodations as on Airbnb. Irrespective of whether you want to sign up as a host or stay as a traveller here are few Airbnb Alternatives for you which also have affiliate programs:
Flipkey offers vacation homes across the world and is associated with travel giant TripAdvisor which means they are no small fry. Flipkey especially excels at group bookings. Flipkey, however, is new to the affiliate marketing scene and has launched its affiliate program only on their US network in 2019.
Wimdu is another brand that is strong on holiday rental homes around the world. There are many cities worldwide in their list of rental properties and they provide properties at rates much cheaper than local hotels.
Vrbo rents out only properties for vacations. There is no one to host you but you get the property to yourself. It is generally best for people who want to rent out for a longer period and have a larger group of people travelling.
Booking is the top Airbnb’s competitor. They do have their own affiliate program. In short, the more people you bring to Booking, the better the commission rate will be.
While you might not have heard of them, they are in operation since 1996 and have more than 2 million properties listed with them. Vrbo also has great affiliate program where you can earn up to 3% for every guest who rents a Vrbo listing. You can earn $20 for every new host listing referred to Vrbo.
How do I become an affiliate with Airbnb?
You can become an affiliate with Airbnb by becoming part of any of the following programs:
- Airbnb Affiliate: Guest Referral Program (Pays Travel Credit)
- Airbnb Referral Program for Hosts (pays money)
- Associates Program for Airbnb affiliates (pays money)
- Airbnb Affiliate Program for Publishers (pays money)
How do I book Airbnb as a travel agent?
You can book business travel on Airbnb and pay for trips on behalf of others by utilizing the ‘Airbnb for work’ program. The process works like this.
- You select the property that you want to stay in
- You choose business travel and add the person/persons who will be travelling
- You connect with the host where you, the primary traveller and the host can get any doubts and queries answered.
How safe is Airbnb?
Airbnb is very safe provided you understand that at the end of the day you are always responsible for your own safety while travelling. It can be as safe as the average hotel can be if you can keep the following in mind.
- Look for listings with minimum 4 stars and at least 10 positive reviews in the last few months. The ideal is to find old and recent reviews which will indicate that standards have been the same over a period of time.
- Look for photographs especially of the bathroom to get a fair idea about the levels of cleanliness. Don’t go ahead with a place that has no photos.
- Research about the neighbourhood to understand what kind of a place you’ll find yourself in. Understand that the place is safe and there will be also enough transportation.
- Chat with the host or talk on over phone to confirm your dates and also ensure that they are available.
- You can also try and look them up on social media to see if they are present or active.
Is Airbnb Dying?
Airbnb is not dying. In fact, it is hale and hearty. While it is true that it has been affected due to the ongoing global pandemic, however booking values have been growing and in a post-pandemic world, it is set to emerge as a preferred holiday stay option as compared to hotels.
Actually, Airbnb and Booking are the world’s most famous platforms to find travel listings and they do have all your houses in there.
Airbnb does have a very profitable, working and perfectly good affiliate program.
With access to over 4 million homes in 191 countries and 60,000 cities on its rolls, Airbnb is not going away any time soon.
If you think you have the resources for this and want a steady trickle of passive income to flow in, I would suggest you sign up with the affiliate program from Airbnb. It is not something you will regret.
I understand that their affiliate and their referral programs but also their commission rates may be vague. However, if you like travelling and you wanna create a website or a Youtube channel for travelling, it is a nice idea to utilise Airbnb or Booking to make money.
These platforms convert like crazy and most people would book from them no matter what. Your article will just show them where to go and maybe some specific houses that they would love to stay in.
All in all, if you want to make money online using Airbnb affiliate, check out our free guide on how to create a profitable website in just 30 minutes. It is not as tough as many people think. In fact, anyone can do it since we have a step by step tutorial.
This is it, with today’s topic. I hope you find it helpful.