Today Best Western announced a groundbreaking Airbnb-style service that the company promises will “revolutionize” the way Americans visit new cities.
“We started Best Western in 1946 with a crazy little idea,” said CEO David Kong. “We believed that travelers deserve ice machines that never run out of fresh-cracked ice, that no shower is complete without tiny bottles of surgically-precise amounts of shampoo, and that clothes hangers should be bolted to the closet because that’s where they belong.”
The new service, named www.bestwestern.com, is officially live and poised to take on industry veterans like Airbnb. “From this day forward, anyone, from any walk of life, can now use our revolutionary, always-on online portal to book a room in any of the 3,637 cities in which we operate,” said Kong.
Analysts remain skeptical of the service, however, citing the fact that the market of travelers who want to stay within walking distance of a Fuddruckers is down 34% year-over-year. Furthermore, the number of consumers requiring an airport shuttle that has no seat belts and smells like Black & Milds has shrunk 15% since 2011.
Best Western also faces fierce competition from players like Motel 6, which recently launched Motel 360°, a virtual reality experience that allows users to interact with windows that open four inches from the comfort of their own homes.