Why sharing is good – even when the travel industry says it isn’t

Ivelin/Shutterstock
Ivelin/Shutterstock
When it comes to travel, is sharing good for you?

If you’re talking about the $3.5 billion-a-year “sharing” economy, which turns consumers into travel providers, you’ll often hear a “no.”

Whether you’re considering a home rental instead of a hotel or driving someone else’s car over hiring a taxi, experts warn you to beware before you share.

The poster kids for the perils of peer-to-peer travel include Airbnb, where one host recently ran afoul of New York’s law banning short-term rentals, and RelayRides, which last year had a fatality in one of its rental vehicles. Critics also point to companies such as FlightCar, a start-up that offers off-airport car rentals, which they claim are skirting taxes and government regulation.

But ask travelers if sharing is good, and you’re more likely to get a “yes.” And they have the stories to prove it.
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