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Working from anywhere just got easier with Airbnb’s new features

Nov. 11, 2021
4 min read
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This week, Airbnb announced its 2021 winter release, introducing dozens of new features to the vacation rental platform, including some designed to make booking and traveling easier for guests.

Earlier this year, Airbnb dropped a series of new features such as flexible stays and flexible destinations that helped people find places to travel during the pandemic when the "where" and "when" were less important than simply taking advantage of remote work and schooling.

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The new features, ranging from updated translation technology to a review process for a home's accessibility features, are helping the platform become more inclusive.

Other new advances, like a tool to help verify a home's Wi-Fi speed and a wider search tool for people who are "even more flexible" with their travel plans, also highlight how Airbnb is adapting to how travel has changed during the pandemic.

According to a new survey from Airbnb, out of 7,500 consumers, 38% "of self-identified hybrid/remote employees say they would rather quit their jobs than go back to work in-person full-time." In the same survey, 63% of those polled said they expect more flexibility from their companies.

Translation: Wi-Fi speeds are very important to this new set of remote workers who are willing to work, well, basically anywhere.

Whether you're looking for a place to work by the beach or just a house to rent for the holidays, here are some of the new Airbnb features you can use to start planning a trip today.

Courtesy of Airbnb

Better translation

Just as the U.S. borders reopen to foreign travelers this week, one of Airbnb's most exciting features for people hoping to travel abroad without the hurdle of a language barrier is its new "translation engine."

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Operating in over 60 languages, the updated translation software "improves the quality of more than 99% of Airbnb listings," the company claims. Now, users will no longer need to click to translate property descriptions and reviews as they'll be automatically translated instead.

Confirmed Wi-Fi speeds

With "Verified Wi-Fi," a great new feature for people who need to stay connected while traveling, hosts can test the internet speed in their listing in the Airbnb app and have it confirmed in the listing. This feature will help Airbnb users dodge spotty Wi-Fi and have a more productive work-from-anywhere experience.

More flexibility

When Airbnb originally launched flexible search options earlier this year, people were ready to go wherever Airbnb told them they could, from mountain retreats to seaside escapes, all because they were able to be flexible by a few days, a few months or even a few hundred miles.

Now, Airbnb is releasing the "I'm (even more) Flexible" tool, expanding flexible booking options up to a 12-month window. They're also adding new flexible search categories including off the grid; ski-in, ski-out; luxe; and offbeat homes.

So, you can start planning next fall's leaf-peeping adventure to basically anywhere with trees, whether you want to stay in a Beyoncé-worthy mansion or a remote cottage where Wi-Fi is the last thing on your mind.

Confirmed accessibility

One major improvement to Airbnb is a new program designed to confirm the accessibility features described in a listing. Now, hosts are required to submit photos of listed accessibility features to be manually reviewed by a specialized team of Airbnb agents. According to the company, it has already confirmed the accuracy of 100,000 features in 25,000 homes.

This is in addition to other accessibility features Airbnb has implemented recently, including enhanced search filters, 1 on 1 messaging with hosts to discuss certain parts of a home or the experience, dedicated teams working to improve accessibility for travelers and more.

Trip organization

Another tool travelers will find handy is the redesign of Airbnb's "Trips" tab, where all of your already booked trip information lives. Updates here include a countdown clock to your arrival, check-in details, all current and upcoming reservations and personalized suggestions for Airbnb Experiences to go along with the journey.

Featured image by (Photo courtesy of Airbnb.)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
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  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
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  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
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Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023