August 11, 2018, was to mark the day that four winners of a stay at the Great Wall of China, Airbnb style, were to be announced.
A funny thing happened – apparently Airbnb forgot to ask permission from China first.
The four winners would have been the first people to stay on the Wall in thousands of years. They would have stayed in a custom-designed home situated on an ancient part of the wall.
The Great Wall of China, which spans an incredible 21,000 kilometers, is one of the wonders of the world. It is a destination spot for millions of tourists, who marvel at the incredible accomplishments in engineering and construction.
These grounds hold a lot of cultural significance to the people of China.
Airbnb decided to invite people to enter a contest to win a trip to one of the great wall’s towers. China apparently knew nothing about this. Airbnb says the proper channels were taken to get permission, and that they had received a “thumbs up”. The confusion here is that China says no such thing happened.
Maybe a few wires got crossed but unfortunately, for now, this dream Airbnb night is no longer.
In a statement, Airbnb said, “We were excited to promote the Great Wall and Chinese cultural heritage with our night at the Great Wall and while there was an agreement in place that was the basis for the announcement of this event, we deeply respect the feedback we have received. We have made the decision to not move forward with this event and instead we are working on a range of other experiences and initiatives that showcase China as a destination and highlight how people travel can drive human connections.”
Airbnb is quite disappointed. It would have been a great win for someone, no doubt. Airbnb plans for something special for some other lucky winners.
Sonia Rina Landry is a passionate entrepreneur, speaker, author, and personal development coach. She is an outspoken advocate of the free market economy and has helped countless clients identify their core values, envision and realize goals that resonate with those values. She oversees several businesses online and offline.