Name Critic Rates Airbnb


Our Rating

If there is one sure way to brand a travel industry name, it is to get thousands of users to use the services every month. I just can’t get enough of this name and it is not just because I am actually an Airbnb host.

Today it is just a name with magic connotations, though the founders will fondly tell you it was literally from when they thought of renting out an air mattress on the floor of their apartment, and throwing in a simple breakfast to make it a B&B (bed and breakfast). What they don’t say, but I strongly believe is part of the background, was the fact that “couch surfing” was really catching on, especially with college age kids. Heck, I had one of my own doing it in San Francisco. Of course they did it on the free model – which still exists. But Airbnb monetized the idea, and quickly grew into not only renting a bed or room for a night, but a whole apartment, cabin, or house.

All the other traditional vacation house rental agencies finally had some good competition and had to scramble to modernize their systems. Home Away from Home and Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) were the biggest of these. Notice how their names are so long they are more like taglines. Home Away has now gobbled up VRBO (and a bunch of other partners) and in turn been taken over by Expedia, the big travel booking site.

So now we have two great brand names that are able to have wide reach into associated businesses (Airbnb Experiences and Expedia Travel, for starters) and their names still fit. What does an Airbnb Experience like fishing/cooking day trip have to do with air mattresses and bed and breakfasts? Nothing. And it doesn’t matter – such is the power of a great brand name.

Great short name and smart logoAnd boy do I love that cute little logo.  So advanced, but so unique and so simple. Simply brilliant. Enough said.


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