Becoming an Airbnb Adventures Host — What does it take?

Airbnb clearly lays out the specific requirements needed to be a host and offer short-term rental opportunities to guests. You need to have a property, be responsible, take reservations, avoid cancellations, and keep your guest rating high. These are some of the same requirements needed to host Airbnb Adventures, except you don’t need a property to list.

How does Airbnb Adventures work?

Airbnb Adventures is a collection of activities, many of which include multi-day experiences, hosted by experts in specific local areas. They take small groups to off-the-beaten-path locations to immerse them in the culture and communities of an area. Adventures are a way to really experience an area and “do it like a local” instead of sticking to the usual tourist activities. The program is an expansion of Airbnb Experiences and ups the ante to include, as the name suggests, more adventurous activities.

Adventures include a wide variety of exciting activities that expose you to natural wonders, relatively unknown destinations, and fun activities you’ll be talking about for the rest of your life. When the program originally launched, Airbnb offered a limited number of winners a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take an 80-day around the world trip that spanned six continents, 18 countries, and eight different modes of transportation, including a hot air balloon.

Airbnb Adventures is similar to the Airbnb Experiences program but offers an opportunity to push participants out of their comfort zones. There are currently more than 200 Adventures spread throughout the globe that are hosted by local experts with interesting stories. Adventure groups are small (no more than a dozen people or so) and people can make personal connections during their experiences.

The program is intended to take advantage of the growing adventure travel market and Airbnb is hoping to offer more attainable experiences designed to incorporate the natural surroundings of a destination.

At the moment Airbnb Adventures include:

  • Tracking lions
  • Trekking into the Amazon Jungle
  • Experiencing cowboy life in the American west
  • Trekking from Dana to Petra
  • Touring paranormal points of interest in the US Southwest
  • Camping on the side of a cliff in Colorado
  • Kayaking through the Swedish Islands and having a culinary experience
  • Musical camping in the desert of California
  • 7-day adventure visit to Rapa Nui
  • Hiking in the World’s Most Silent Place
  • Trekking through mystical Oman
  • Farming in Indiana Amish country
  • Searching for Sasquatch in Washington State

Prices range depending on the adventure. They average about $600 for three days but there are adventures available for a little as $80 for one night and as much as $5000 for 10-day treks.

What’s Required of Airbnb Adventures Hosts?

Hosts who choose to offer Airbnb Adventure experiences arrange the details of the events and control all aspects of the adventure. They choose when and where, set up accommodations if there are any, decide what services they want to offer, and determine the cost of the adventure. Airfare is not included in the adventure, with the exception of the around-the-world 80-day itinerary.

To be an Airbnb Adventures host, you do not need to offer a room, apartment, or home. You also don’t need to travel far from your own hometown if you don’t want to do so. Most Adventure hosts offer their services right where they live because those are the areas they are more familiar with.

Just about anyone is eligible to host an Adventure as long as you have the knowledge and experience to share the adventure with people. That said, you need to be sure your adventure meets any legal requirements set forth by your local governments.

Airbnb offers guidelines for what it believes would be great Adventures, the same as it does for accommodations and Airbnb Experiences. (It should be noted Experiences and Adventures are not the same thing, though there are similarities to how the programs are run.) Those who sign up to be Adventure hosts with the platform create special Adventure pages that include descriptions and photos of what they’re offering. Airbnb reviews this information (it serves as your application) and approves your offering if it thinks it will be something people want to do. Then the listing goes live.

When it comes to Experiences, Airbnb wants things that demonstrate your expertise, offer a unique perspective, provide access to a special place or community, and offer something immersive and hands-on to guests. The same is true for Adventures but the experiences must be adventurous and more along the lines of a once-in-a-lifetime event. Experiences and Adventures should not be large or impersonal tours of an area. There must be a clear focus and it cannot be something guests could find on their own.

Hosts of Experiences decide whether they need a business license or insurance and laws regarding these things vary from state to state. It’s far more likely that Adventure hosts have invested in these things because of the risk level associated with Adventures. Keep in mind, Airbnb takes a hands-off approach to insurance matters and allows the hosts to run their own show when it comes to issues like insurance and local regulations. This is, in part, because these events take place in so many different locations and Airbnb would need to keep tabs on the local requirements all over the world, which occasionally change or are updated.

If you think you want to be an Airbnb Adventure host, it’s important to do a lot of research and make sure you have the protection you need to host such an event. In most cases, Adventure hosts have already worked professionally in the field they are designing their Adventure around.

The program is a chance for you to create your own travel and tour business in a niche you love and that you have experience in and share it with potential guests from around the world. Airbnb Adventures gives you access to a market you might otherwise not be able to reach.

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