Airbnb Launches New Complaint Feature

May 2, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. start-up / ˈstɑrtˌʌp / (n.) – a business or company that has just started
Example: Some big companies started from small start-ups.

2. tenant / ˈtɛn ənt / (n.) – someone who temporarily rents space for residential or business purposes
Example: The old apartment always has new tenants.

3. lodging / ˈlɒdʒ ɪŋ / (n.) – a place where a person can stay temporarily
Example: There are plenty of people who offer lodgings in places popular with tourists.

4. destination / ˌdɛs təˈneɪ ʃən / (n.) – a place where someone or something is meant to go
Example: Osaka is a popular destination among tourists in Japan.

5. sumptuous / ˈsʌmp tʃu əs / (adj.) – superb and usually expensive
Example: The guests enjoyed a sumptuous meal made by the hotel’s top chef.


Read the text below.
Airbnb has recently given inconvenienced neighbors the power to complain about rowdy renters next door.

Airbnb Inc., a fast-growing start-up company, lets short-term tenants connect with people who rent out their houses or properties through the Internet. Properties rented out by Airbnb hosts range from private rooms to grand castles. Some also offer unique choices such as igloos and treehouses. Because of this wide variety, Airbnb rentals are becoming a popular lodging choice among many travelers.

However, as Airbnb tenants increased, complaints about rowdy renters have also increased. Previously, inconvenienced neighbors could only tweet their complaints, but through an online forum in the company’s official website, inconvenienced neighbors now have the power to give feedback about Airbnb renters. Airbnb’s customer support team will then analyze the complaints and take necessary actions, which the management has not yet specified.

The new feature was first announced in Japan, where a recent upsurge in tourists has been causing a shortage in hotel rooms and has, in turn, been boosting Airbnb rentals in the country.

The tremendous increase in foreigners in local neighborhoods has caused concerns among residents, which prompted Airbnb to introduce the new feedback feature in Japan first. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has also recently introduced new guidelines on renting out homes, which may possibly reduce Airbnb rentals in the country.

Currently, Chuo Ward in Osaka is the top destination among Airbnb travelers, which has seen a 7000% increase in Airbnb guests in 2015. Chuo is home to the historic Osaka Castle, as well as to more than 300 restaurants that offer travelers a wide selection of sumptuous meals.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         How should people who are staying in another person’s home behave?
·         If somebody were to live in your home temporarily, what are the rules that you would set?

Discussion B

·         Would you prefer to stay in a hotel or would you like to try an Airbnb rental?
·         What qualities do you look for in a temporary lodging? Discuss.

May 2, 2016