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© 2021 Sindiola Koka | Alba Kruja (Demneri) | Eglantina Hysa
Airbnb nowadays is considered as one of the largest networked hospitality businesses that went from sharing rooms into a very successful business spread worldwide. It is continuously expanding its activity and nowadays it has become a leader of networked hospitality by bringing innovation in business models and increasing the number of tourists due to its low prices. In recent years, Airbnb has grown rapidly worldwide, including Albania. This study focuses on Airbnb hosts in Tirana: how they have adapted to the difficulties and benefits this platform offers, what motivated them, how being Airbnb hosts has affected their lives and where they see the future of this platform in Albania. Following a qualitative research method, semi-structured interviews with 8 Airbnb hosts in Albania were conducted. The findings show that economic benefits along with the social ones lie behind the main motivation on becoming an Airbnb host. In terms of business success, being friendly and kind with the customer, but also professionalism are important. The results suggest that there is a need of building a local Airbnb community to connect with other hosts, share experiences and advise each other on providing better services to the guests. Moreover, the sector suffers from a lack of regulatory framework which calls on the attention of government and policymakers. Knowing the problems, challenges, and benefits of operating under Airbnb would be interesting for policy-makers to be able to support the sector with the necessary regulatory framework.