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Called the "Ebay for space" by Time Magazine, Airbnb is an online marketplace allowing anyone from private residents to commercial properties to rent out their extra space. The reputation-based site allows for user reviews, verification, and secure online transactions. Listings include vacation rentals, private rooms, entire apartments, bed and breakfasts, boutique hotels, castles, treehouses, and many other traditional and non-traditional accommodations.
Airbnb’s open platform allows users to post listings of their space. Prospective travelers can search by city or country, utilizing filters such as price and room type to find exactly what suits their needs. Travelers contact hosts directly through the web site, which includes user profiles and friend recommendations. Dates are confirmed through on-site messaging, and the traveler books directly online using their credit card or PayPal account. Hosts receive a reservation request which they can accept or decline. Both parties then receive an itinerary on accepted reservations, and are set to go.