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September 2016

It’s Airbnb — but for the 50-Plus

Have the time to travel, but not the money? Want to broaden your social horizons? Meet The Freebird Club, which can solve both problems.

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The Freebird Club featured in The Telegraph

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Can This Airbnb For Seniors Help Keep The Elderly Connected?

If you thought the sharing economy was all about young people, it may be time to revise that notion. Airbnb recently said seniors are its fastest-growing demographic (as well as its best-reviewed hosts). And studies show that people 55 and over are more likely to participate on sharing platforms than the population as a whole.

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Trust Safety

Your Safety & Security

The Freebird Club strives to create a real sense of trust and security among our members, and the safety of our hosts and guests is our number one priority. For this reason, all of our members are checked and verified before any bookings can take place.

To join The Freebird Club you are required to two photographs:
1) A copy of a valid proof of identity document. This may be a passport, national identity card or a driver’s licence.
2) A photograph chosen to be your profile photo. This must include your face.

The Freebird Club team manually checks that both the photo and date of birth on the official identification corresponds to the profile photo the provided date of birth.

The Freebird Club uses a highly secure user-friendly payment system called Stripe. This system facilitates payment using members’ bank or credit card details.

In joining The Freebird Club, the team sends an email to the given email address. This email seeks to confirm the address provided. Upon completion of the joining process, an email confirming membership to The Freebird Club will also be sent.

As we prioritise the safety of all members, only first names are visible on each members’ profile. To keep a host’s location private, a map of the host’s general area is shown. When a booking is confirmed, each party receives the other members full name and the guest receives the host’s address. A host may share their phone number with the guest if they wish to.

We currently store documents on Amazon. This storage complies with the safe harbour regulations. All documents are encrypted, and only accessible with private tokens dynamically generated. Please note that documentation provided by members is never published on The Freebird Club website.

Be A Host

How to Host

Hosting allows you to welcome other Freebird Club members into your home. This gives you the opportunity to connect with like-minded Freebirds, and providing guests with a comfortable base for the duration of their trip. As a host, you can help a guest experience your area with ease and a local’s knowledge. For this, you can decide on a nightly rate to be charged. This payment will go through 24 hours after the guest arrives at your home.

If you choose to be a host, The Freebird Club website will function to connect you with potential guests. This process has been tailored to make things as effortless as possible.

Interested Freebird members will contact you, enquiring to stay in your home. Freebird messaging has been set up so that each time you receive a message on your Freebird profile, we will send you an email notifying you.

After you receive an enquiry, you can become acquainted through Freebird messaging, and find out about the interested guest’s plans for the duration of their stay. As a host, you may like to share more meals than breakfast with the guest, and even go sightseeing together. We provide a space for each members wishes to be communicated. If this suits you, you can extend an invitation, if not, then that’s OK, too.

It is important that all Freebird members feel comfortable during this process and so communication is key! In the time leading up to your guests stay, make sure your guest has directions or the best route to your home. Each member will also receive a booklet outlining things to consider when hosting and being a guest in someone’s home.

Be A Guest

How to be a Guest

Freebird Club members are encouraged to connect with one another through traveling from one home to another. By being a guest, you can experience a new place through a local’s eyes, staying in a comfortable environment. Each guest and host becomes acquainted through finding accommodation on The Freebird Club website, ensuring members’ experiences are tailored to their needs.

Guests and hosts can share stories, experiences, and even meals. The Freebird Club stipulates that guests receive breakfast each morning for the duration their stay. This is included in the nightly rate, which is paid when your booking is confirmed. This alleviates any possible worry about having to pay during your trip. If anything goes wrong, The Freebird Club will of course be here to help.

If hosts and guests would like to share meals, we provide a space for that to be communicated. Similarly, if a guest would like to simply stay at a host’s home and explore the area themselves, or like to spend time with their host, we provide a space for this to be discussed. This way, all members know what to expect, and feel comfortable at the host’s home before they even arrive.

Once you are a member of The Freebird Club, you can search for places you would like to visit at dates that suit. You may then look through the various host profiles, ideally finding a likeminded member to stay with, in a location that appeals to you.

The next step involves the guest sending an enquiry to a potential host, perhaps sharing the nature of your trip. It is then up to the host to send an invite to you, this may be instant or maybe after getting to know you a little through Freebird messaging. When your booking is confirmed, you will receive an SMS on your mobile phone.

We encourage both guest and host to communicate. This might be about dietary or mobility requirements, or even just about the best way to get to the host location. It’s important to ask any questions you may have, helping your trip to run as smoothly as possible.