🚐 Airbnb's travel-ution

Thursday, September 23, 2021 by Snacks
_Airbnb review: 5 stars for location, 1 star for no microwave [Marco Bottigelli/Moment via GettyImages]_

Airbnb review: 5 stars for location, 1 star for no microwave [Marco Bottigelli/Moment via GettyImages]

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Stocks bounced back yesterday, even though the Fed signaled it could begin reducing its economy-boosting bond purchases soon and raise interest rates as early as next year.


1. Airbnb's CEO is planning for a travel-ution — and it’s all about flexibility (and yurts)

Welcome to workationland... Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky predicts a revolution: a travel revolution. At a conference this week, Chesky said he expects the industry to bounce back bigger than ever. Chesky believes a “travel revolution” will usher in a new golden age of travel, that’s more free-style than pre-pandemic travel. What he expects:

  • Long stays: 50% of Airbnb stays are a week or more, and 20% exceed a month.
  • Loose plans: 40% of travelers don’t initially have a destination or date in mind when they visit Airbnb’s site.
  • Rural > urban: Rental occupancy in large US cities fell 11% this year from pre-pandemic levels, but increased 27% in rural areas.

You say you want a travel-ution… Airbnb is a comeback story of the corona-conomy. The rental icon lost 80% of its business when the pandemic hit. But it quickly embraced the work-from-home life and catered to changing travel trends. Since then, sales have rebounded to exceed pre-pandemic levels. How Airbnb’s ushering in the travel-ution:

  • “I’m Flexible” options let travelers go anywhere, anytime. Handy, since 70% of US companies will continue offering flexible and remote work.
  • Unique stays like boat houses, yurts, caves, and even shipping containers cater to adventure-hungry, couch-tired remote workers (#edgy).
  • Off-the-beaten-track options in rural allow travelers to stay socially distanced as part of Airbnb’s “Greatest Outdoors” campaign.
  • Online experiences, like a Mezcal & Tequila Cocktail Masterclass, give travelers Covid-safe options.

Revolutionize to thrive... is better than “adapt to survive.” Airbnb thrived during the pandemic by recognizing the “old” travel biz was gone, and quickly building new experiences for remote, Covid-conscious customers. But it’s harder for some travel companies to adapt: Despite a rebound in leisure trips, the airline biz is struggling. Business travel, which brings in 75% of airlines' profits, still isn't budging back.


2. Princess Polly parent A.K.A Brands goes public as fast-fashion butts heads with sustainable trends

Square-toe heels out in public... Princess Polly just hit the US public market. You've probably seen Gen Z “microinfluencers” doing hauls of its clothes (#PollyHaul). The trendy online fashion boutique, owned by A.K.A Brands, is one of the first fast-fashionistas to hit Wall Street since ASOS. Like ultra-fast fashion giant Shein, A.K.A churns out 500 to 800 styles per week across its brands, which include Princess Polly, Petal & Pup, and Rebdolls. But A.K.A. shares fell 9% after their NYSE debut.

  • Used > new... Fast-fashion isn't so fashionable anymore. Recommerce and thrifting have been #thriving recently thanks to enviro-focused Zillennials.
  • Wild stat: The fashion industry is responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions — and fast-fashion is one of the worst offenders.

Recycled t-shirt bidding war... The ~$30B fast-fashion market is projected to grow 22% this year from 2020 – but younger consumers don't love the environmental price tag, and are willing to pay extra for more sustainable fashion. Now, fast-fashion brands are trying to hop on the green wave. Polly launched an "Earth Club" and started using "low-impact" clothing material, H&M plans to use 30% recycled materials by 2025, and UK-based BooHoo pledged to halve emissions by 2030.


Fashion isn't sustainable, but sustainability is fashionable.. On one end, we've got recommerce brands like ThredUp and Poshmark that have leaned in to green. On the other, brands like Shein and Forever21 are focused on constantly-changing trends — which requires churning out thousands of new items each day. Gen Z controls $140B+ in spending power, and 25% of GenZ'ers say their purchasing decisions are influenced by environmental impact. Fast-fashion may have to change to stay on trend.

What else we’re Snackin’

  • Booted: Apple denied Epic Games' request to bring Fortnite back to the App Store, saying it won't reinstate Epic's developer account until their legal battle ends.
  • Amplify: Facebook's Zuck is getting heat for signing off on a proposed initiative which involved pushing positive news stories and ads about FB to users.
  • Vaxing: United Airlines has been accused of unlawfully denying employee exemptions to vaccine mandates, like religious and medical exemptions.
  • Primed: Amazon's upcoming physical department stores could feature high-tech dressing rooms, QR codes, and the Zon's own clothing brands.
  • Flated: Cheerios-maker General Mills says to expect higher prices as inflation and labor shortages continue to squeeze its operations.
  • Score: Chinese fintech giant Ant Financial, which has over 1B+ users, will fully share consumer credit data with the Chinese government.


  • Jobless claims
  • Earnings expected from Nike, Accenture, Costco, Darden Restaurants, and Rite Aid

Authors of this Snacks own shares of: Apple, Amazon, Netflix

ID: 1848112

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