Many Americans want to help Ukrainian citizens in the face of their country’s invasion by Russia. The challenge becomes how you actually do that. Crypto makes sending money easier in some ways, but redeeming it can be a challenge.
It’s also worth noting that social media has been filled with scams. Yes, that link might donate to a credible source or it might be going to someone looking to take your money and not do good in a country torn by a war it never asked for.
Aside from donating to global relief organizations like the Red Cross, it’s challenging for well-intentioned Americans to know exactly what to do. Surprisingly, and perhaps unknown to the company, Airbnb (ABNB) – Get Airbnb, Inc. Class A Report, has provided a way for Americans (or really anyone) to funnel money to people in Ukraine who need their help.
How Is Airbnb Helping Ukraine?
Americans — and people all over the world — have been booking Airbnb stays in Ukraine. They don’t intend to use those rooms. Instead, they’re paying to stay as a way to help the people of Ukraine.
It’s an ingenious hack designed to send money for services they never intend to use. The movement, using the hashtag #airbnbukraine, has been spreading on Twitter.
People around the world have been booking Airbnb reservations in Ukraine and making it clear they don’t intend to use them. They’re also spreading the message so more people can contribute in this way.
Airbnb Helps Directly as Well
Like many companies, Airbnb has opted to do what it can for the people of Ukraine.
“The home rental platform has already moved to offer free housing to 100,000 Ukrainian refugees,” Guardian.com reported.
The travel rental platform has also dropped its fees on any booking in Ukraine, according to the website.
“We appreciate the generosity of our community during this moment of crisis,” an Airbnb spokesperson said. “Airbnb is also waiving all guest and host fees on all bookings in Ukraine at this time.”
Airbnb has not pulled out of Russia because the company does very little business in the country in the first place, according to CEO Brian Chesky, but it intends to review what little business it has.
“In a global humanitarian crisis like this I think everyone should ask the question: how can we help,” he said. “The way Airbnb can help is we provide housing for millions of people every night all over the world. If you want to take in a refugee family, we are going to work with resettlement partners.”