Concur & Airbnb: Bringing the Sharing Economy to Business Travelers

Yesterday Airbnb announced a partnership with Concur, just a few short months after Concur’s Tim MacDonald began discussing data indicating that use of Airbnb has become a trend among business travelers.
 
With this partnership, the benefits of the sharing economy are now extended to the business world: business travelers get more booking options and easier expense management. Finance and travel managers have more accuracy, visibility and control. And we hope that travelers get more personalized travel experiences that contribute to their perfect trip. It’s a winning proposition all around.
 
Concur’s partnerships with Airbnb and Uber – combined with other platform partners like United, Marriott, IHG and Avis – bring seamless connections to our travelers, for direct bookings and spend management. But you don’t have to take our word for it. The media coverage about the Airbnb partnership has been glowing. Here are some takes from the press on why this partnership signals big change and big opportunity for the business travel marketplace.

 

Airbnb Taps Business Travel Market With ConcurWall Street Journal

“’A growing number of professionals are choosing to book travel expenses on their own, using Airbnb and other sites to find cheaper deals or locations they prefer,’ according to Tim MacDonald, Concur’s executive vice president of platform and data services. He estimates that as much as half of hotel bookings for business trips are done by individuals rather than through corporate travel agents.

 

‘That activity can expose businesses to greater risk, as it limits their ability to track expenses, compliance with travel policies and identify instances of possible fraud’, MacDonald said.

 

‘We’re able to bring those companies like Airbnb into a company’s travel program to meet their objectives and all those policies,’ he said.”

 

Enough of the Squatters. Airbnb Has Its Eye on Business Travelers – Mashable

“Beginning this fall, business travelers using Concur’s TripLink service will be able to book Airbnb properties directly, and have their expense reports pre-populated.

 

’Employees clearly want Airbnb in their managed travel program and we think that trajectory will continue,’ said Tim MacDonald, executive vice president at Concur. ‘Our goal is to support customers who want to empower their employees while ensuring that fiscal visibility and duty of care responsibilities are met.’”

 

Booking an Airbnb room for your business trip is now legit: Airbnb beefs up business travel featuresVenturebeat

“In its partnership with Concur, Airbnb will be integrated within Concur’s Triplink system, which both helps pull in all of the employee’s travel information even it’s booked outside of the company’s travel system, and also incentivizes employees to be more cost-effective through a rewards system. Airbnb bookings will now be included in Concur-based travel programs. Concur currently provides travel programs for more than 70 percent of Fortune 100 companies, according to the company.

 

‘We’ve noticed that business travelers are increasingly taking advantage of a new generation of suppliers like Airbnb. Employees clearly wantAirbnb in their managed travel program and we think that trajectory will continue,’ said Concur executive vice president Tim MacDonald, executive vice president at Concur.

 

‘Our goal is to support customers who want to empower their employees while ensuring that fiscal visibility and duty of care responsibilities are met.’”

 

 

Airbnb Expands Into Business Travel New York Times

“Airbnb, which operates in nearly 200 countries, has also teamed up with Concur, the expense account and travel booking management company. Through the partnership, travelers can book Airbnb accommodations via Concur’s smartphone app or website. Expenses for the bookings will automatically appear in Concur’s expense account management software.

 

Airbnb’s pitch is aimed at those on business trips who tire of lodging at large hotel chains. Often, Concur has found, employees have ventured outside their internal travel systems to book trips using Airbnb’s service, including travelers who have corporate deals worked out with a hotel chain.”

Discover more about the Concur Platform at developer.concur.com and @ConcurAPI.