Home-sharing company Airbnb is trialing a feature that will allow up to 16 people to split the cost of renting temporary accommodation. Airbnb hopes the eventual rollout of the long-requested feature will "make it even easier to use Airbnb to travel with friends and family."
Currently, the process of reserving an Airbnb stay either through the app or via desktop requires a single person to carry the financial burden even when travelling in a group. This inevitably leads to squabbling when certain friends or family members are a little sluggish or evasive when it comes to paying back their share of the rental cost.
The feature will also allow users to divvy up the premiums over a number of credit or debit cards to keep some spare cash handy for other travel expenses. Equally, if several users combine their credit card limits it would be entirely possible for them to afford a swankier abode... in the short term at least.
Airbnb spokesperson Tim Rathschmidt told The Next Web: "We're currently testing a way to split the cost of a trip on the Airbnb platform. This is a small, initial pilot — our goal is to make it even easier to use Airbnb to travel with friends and family."
At the moment it's only being trialled on small group of homes and it's unclear when a wider rollout would begin at this stage, or whether Airbnb hosts could opt out of the new payment option, but considering the benefits it is unlikely travellers or hosts would see the changes as anything but a boon.
Airbnb also recently introduced a flexible payment system in April, allowing users to book and pay for rentals in installments. With a little extra to spare with Airbnb's laxer payment initiatives, perhaps this £1,800-a-night horror home is slightly more attractive? Perhaps not.