In the week leading up to International Women’s Day, Airbnb celebrated the role of women Hosts in its growing community in India, by hosting a panel discussion featuring actor Sayani Gupta, actor, author and producer Tisca Chopra, and Airbnb Host Ranjana Patil.
The panelists spoke on this year’s theme of International Women’s Day (#BreakTheBias), highlighting how they persevered in their unique journeys despite facing unprecedented challenges. This was exemplified by the stories of women Hosts on Airbnb that had begun their entrepreneurial journey on the platform, illustrating how tourism has played a key role in their journey to success as Hosts.
Women power Airbnb’s community of Hosts in India and globally. Currently, one-third of the Host community in India is women. Many such Hosts are pillars to their local communities – employing other women, including some in marginalized communities, catalyzing economic activity and contributing to regrowth. Hosting has also proved a significant earning channel in the wake of the pandemic, with new women Hosts who started hosting in 2021 earning more than USD 1 billion globally and over INR 100 million in India.
Highlighting the importance of women becoming Hosts on the Airbnb platform, Amanpreet Bajaj, General Manager – Airbnb India, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan said, “Creating opportunities to expand women entrepreneurship in the tourism sector is a key priority for Airbnb. We are proud to partner with a number of dedicated organizations in their ongoing work to support equality and empower women around the world. More women than men are Airbnb Hosts globally, and we are committed to increasing the share of Indian Hosts that are women each year. We will continue to support women around the world in their journeys at home and abroad.”
Data also reveals that Goa leads with the maximum number of women Hosts. Cheryl Gonsalves, one of the most hospitable Hosts in India (based on 5-star ratings), is also based in Goa. Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Kolkata are amongst the other top cities in India with the largest number of women Hosts.
Talking about her hosting journey, Host Ranjana Patil said “There was a time when I was not sure how I would manage all the expenses after leaving my teaching job. Starting my journey as a Host on Airbnb helped me and my family significantly in running our household expenses. It gave me the confidence to deal with difficult situations and thrive as an entrepreneur. I have had the opportunity to meet the most interesting people around the globe who I have hosted and made friends with along the way. I would strongly encourage all women to embrace the spirit of entrepreneurship and live life on their own terms.”
Under this year’s International Women’s Day theme of #BreakTheBias, other panelists also highlighted the importance of persevering in their unique journeys despite facing unprecedented challenges.
“I feel so proud and inspired to see how women across the world are breaking biases and dealing with various stereotypes. I have made some strong decisions in my life due to which, several challenges came my way, both personally and professionally. However, not backing down and ensuring that I put my voice out there, helped me get through every phase. I believe women should break these glass ceilings, take up any role that they truly desire and always aim to be financially independent.”
– Actor, Sayani Gupta
“Having travelled with Airbnb so many times, I find it incredible to see how millions of women in our country and across the world have built a new life and their entrepreneurial journey with Airbnb. It is great to see remarkable Airbnb women Hosts ‘Breaking The Bias’ and that’s something I deeply resonate with”
– Actor, Author and Producer, Tisca Chopra