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Airbnb Offers Split-Payment Option

Beyond the convenience and flexibility, a key selling point of the Airbnb home-share service has been affordability. The company is now taking affordability to the next level, with its new Pay Less Up Front option.

The newly introduced split payment option allows Airbnb customers to pay part of the bill at the time of booking, typically a 50 percent deposit, and the rest closer to the check-in date.

Pay Less Up Front is only available on bookings worth at least $250, made at least 14 days in advance.

In tests of the new payment option, Airbnb found that 40 percent of travelers chose to defer payment. What’s more, many of those who used Pay Less Up Front also booked longer, more expensive stays. That makes it a win for both consumers and the company. Another win for the company and its hosts: Customers were more likely to book further in advance, which helps with inventory management.

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After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.

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