Accommodation search engine AllTheRooms claims to have become the first travel site to show free listings from homesharing firm CouchSurfing alongside hotels and all Airbnb properties.
The US company provides listings from more than 100 booking websites offering six million places to stay from luxury holiday rentals to room shares and campsites.
Founded last year by former Travelocity executive William Beckler and ex-Morgan Stanley banker Joseph DiTomaso, AllTheRooms aims to list every single available room in the world.
“We believe that the travel industry is broken,” said Beckler. “Rather than giving customers what they are looking for, most accommodations search sites think in terms of maximum profit per visitor. Instead of showing the user every available option, they show only the options that make them the most profit – drastically slowing down the already stressful booking process.”
Since room share site Couchsurfing shows more than one million free listings, Beckler believes other travel sites do not want their customers to see it.
Travellers visit more than a dozen different sites before finding their ideal accommodation, according to AllTheRooms’ market research.
They often first visit traditional hotel listings sites, room share sites like Airbnb and CouchSurfing, and then discount sites like Hotwire and Groupon. AllTheRooms aggregates all the options into one portal.
DiTomaso said: “When you stay in a home rather than in a hotel, you can connect with your destination on a deeper level, and see it through the eyes of those who live there. That’s why we’re so excited to now provide our users with CouchSurfing listings.”