Airbnb Makes it Easier for Travelers to Stay in the World’s Most Remote Destinations

The home-sharing service has partnered with geotagging startup what3words to offer stays with a reindeer herding tribe in Northern Mongolia.

Photo: Airbnb

When it comes to traveling, going off the beaten track can sometimes mean extraordinary experiences and other-worldly landscapes. On the flip side, there’s plenty of planning involved, not to mention the possibility of getting lost.

In light of this conundrum, home-sharing service Airbnb has announced a partnership with what3words to list some of the world’s hardest-to-reach destinations on its platform. The startup is essentially a simplified geotagging system, which divides the world into a grid of 3-meter by 3-meter squares, with each assigned to a unique three-word address.

This collaboration will enable host families without a fixed address, or those living a nomadic lifestyle (moving from season to season), to share their homes with travelers on Airbnb.

As such, travelers can look forward to experiencing local living in remote communities, such as in Mongolia with nomadic Dukha reindeer herders in the Taiga forest or a Kazakh family living in Altai Tavan Bogd National Park.

Photo: Airbnb

The first Airbnb X what3words listing promises an adventure for guests, with two nights spent with Dukha (also known as Tsaatan) reindeer herders and Airbnb hosts Otgonbayar and Zorigt in a traditional teepee deep in the Taiga forest of Northern Mongolia. The listing includes two wooden beds, sleeping bags, an open-fire stove for heating and cooking, and full access to the reindeer tribe’s backyard, right in the heart of the Taiga.

In true what3words fashion, guests will meet the tribe at a previously communicated three-word address (earlier this summer, it was “///settings.holly.stereo”) at the edge of the forest and ascend the mountain to the camp at /// either on reindeer or by horse.

Throughout their stay, guests will be immersed in the day-to-day life of the tribe, from herding and milking reindeer to cooking traditional Mongolian dishes and making handicrafts.

Photo: Airbnb

Otgonbayar and Zorigt, Dukha reindeer herders and Airbnb hosts share: “Tourists can now find us easily with a three-word address and experience Taiga lifestyle through Airbnb. When we move to our autumn place from our summer location, we find our new three-word address and share it with our co-host in the city via message or phone call when we have mobile signal. My co-host then updates our three-word address on Airbnb.”

Aside from vacationers, local communities are also set to benefit from this collaboration. Earlier this year, Airbnb signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Environment and Tourism of Mongolia to leverage home sharing for economic empowerment and community development. The MOU will see both parties provide hospitality training for current hosts, as well as potential hosts in rural and remote areas, to encourage the adoption of new digital technology for tourism.

More information here.

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