Airbnb is an online service that matches people seeking vacation rentals and other short-term accommodations with those with rooms to rent, generally private parties that are not professional hoteliers. The site was founded in August 2008 by Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia. In July 2011, the company had over 100,000 listings in 16,000 cities and 186 countries. Listings include private rooms, entire apartments, castles, boats, manors, tree houses, tipis, igloos, private islands and other properties.

The listings on Airbnb vary from $10 a night for a futon in Brooklyn to $5,000 a night for a 6,500-square-foot (600 m2) modern vacation manse in Squaw Valley, California.In late June 2011, an incident with a booked apartment being burglarized and heavily vandalized by the renter lead AirBnB to offering $50,000 in property insurance for landlords, a 24-hour customer-service hotline, and an in-house team devoted to investigating suspicious activity.