Airbnb is rebranding its homesharing service in China as it gears up to conquer the travel market there.
From now on, it’ll be called “Aibiying” (爱彼迎), which translates to “welcome each other with love”. The new name is supposedly easier for Chinese travelers to pronounce than the English version.
The company is also doubling down in the country to capture as much of the world’s biggest tourism market: It’s extending its Trips program – which offers city tours and exclusive experiences recommended by locals, to Shanghai – and is set to triple its workforce in China.
But it’ll have to move quickly if it wants a sizable piece of the $1.5 billion vacation rental pie in the country; Skift notes that while Airbnb has 80,000 listings there, it’s rivaled by local service Tujia, which offers more than 430,000 listings and the backing of a major travel service provider called Ctrip. It’ll be interesting to see if the strategy pays off for Airbnb, er, Aibiying, in the coming years.
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