Is this the Airbnb for backpackers?September 20th, 2016 | | Accommodation
A new share economy player has entered the market, offering guests free rooms and food in exchange for household chores.
The start-up called The RoomXchange, was created to give backpackers a room and food in payment for up to 15-hours a week of housework.
Ludwina Dautovic of Melbourne came up with the idea after providing accommodation and meals for a young overseas guest who helped out around the house in return.
While the website has only just got off the ground, it is seeking interest from hosts who have a spare room and some time on their hands to give guests the “locals experience.”
The RoomXchange offers this enticing message to would-be hosts, “We all lead busy lives, so why not trade that empty room in your home for some time? House cleaning, grocery shopping, cooking or even gardening are a few of the options available to you.”
Ms Dautovic said she believed the concept would appeal to an older generation who had a free bedroom and did not want to spend their weekends doing housework. She thinks now, with the ever increasing cost of living and travel in Australia, is the best time to launch.
”Even in youth hostels, backpackers can pay up to $300 a week and have no privacy, poor security and food not included,” Ms Dautovic said.
”For our guest, Guillaume, he gets to live like a local here with us and we get to be a tourist in our own city, showing him around.”
According to her blog, Ms Dautovic created the start-up as a way of utilising her life and business experiences, and because she is “passionate about reconnecting people, communities and utilising lost resources to create a more sustainable and financially balanced life.”
The new tech venture capitalises on a passion of hers that she’s basically been doing for free. “We’ve organically lived this way for a couple of years,” she told SMH recently.
“I initially looked at Airbnb as a way to utilise the space but the work involved in getting the room hotel-ready wasn’t worth it for me. My children’s friends from overseas would come and stay for a few weeks at a time and in exchange, help out around the house. It’s a fair exchange.”
Do you think this will suit the adventure travel market? Have your say.
Written by Alex Harmon
Source: Courier Mail