One of the most requested features on Airbnb has been the ability to split payments among members of a group traveling together. After all, it's never fun to run after your friends for payment, and according to Airbnb, 43 percent of American group travelers have lost $1,000 or more as a result. Now, after months of testing, the accommodation service is rolling out a group payment tool around the globe.
The feature works with up to sixteen travelers and allows the trip organizer to hold a reservation while only charging their portion to their card. Trip members will have 72 hours to log in and input their credit card information, automatically splitting the costs of travel. Note that one person can pay another's balance; for the reservation to go through, all shares must be paid for. If someone fails to pay up within the 72-hour window, the reservation will be cancelled and all shares refunded.
Airbnb is the first accommodation service to incorporate seamless split payments on a global level. The feature has already been tested on over 80,000 groups in almost 175 countries. It also has the potential to expand Airbnb bookings and users. After all, more accommodations are available in terms of budget when one traveler doesn't have to front the entire payment. Additionally, it draws new users onto the Airbnb platform as people invite their friends to pay individually in group reservations, which just adds to its incredible growth.