Can’t find a hotel for TechCrunch50 or the next conference you are going to? If you don’t mind roughing it, try AirBed and Breakfast. Anyone with an airbed (or couch) can “post a room” and how much it costs. Thrifty travelers can make reservations on the site and pay for the stay.
The site is spare but it does the job (it was pulled together for less than $20,000 in seed capital from friends and family of the founders—San Francisco designers Joe Gebbia and Brian Chesky, and software engineer Nathan Blecharczyk).
AirBed and Breakfast will definitely appeal to younger travelers, and conventioneers who can’t find a regular hotel room. In overbooked Denver, where 20,000 people will be descending for the Democratic National Convention, hotels are already sold out. More than 600 people have found alternative accommodations through AirBed and Breakfast, and 50 to 100 new listings appear every day. Prices range from $20 a night for an airbed to $3,000 for an entire house.
In general, the prices are usually much cheaper (rates in San Francisco, for instance, range from $10 to $175 a night, with the median being $85). And you get to stay with a friendly local who can steer you to restaurants and stores you probably would never find otherwise.
Typically, each person offering a room puts up a picture of themselves and the apartment or house, along with some very basic information. For instance, for $99 a night, you can crash in this 24-year-old’s room in San Francisco:
Accommodates: Single Person
Bed type: Airbed
Room type: Common space
Breakfast: I’ll leave something out
My unit is a 700-square-foot loft in the historic Clocktower building, a 100-year-old warehouse renovated by architect David Baker. It has a shared courtyard space and rooftop view of downtown.
Located in the heart of South Beach only a few blocks from the Moscone Center.
Airbed is an AeroBed® raised mattress.
The combination of the AeroBed and the Internet has now made everybody into an innkeeper.