Some of the most rewarding aspects of any trip includes meeting new people, observing different ways of life and realizing just how many opportunities there are to earn our keep.
While Bermuda is one of our favorite places to visit, it is quite expensive. So, in order to be more frugal on this trip we decided to explore an idea shared with us by a local, on a prior visit. That is, rent a house or apartment from a resident to avoid the exorbitant costs charged by hotels for lodging and food.
This turned out to be MUCH simpler than we initially anticipated. As you might expect, we went online to do our research and quickly found a site (www.bermudarentals.com) that met our needs!
In summary, during our 5-day trip we stayed in 2 apartments: the first adjacent to and the second within the home of Bermuda families.
The first apartment was on the ocean with its own private / community beach, at which we snorkeled for hours! And, since it was during the workweek we had the entire beach all to ourselves 🙂
The owners of this apartment also happen to own the world famous Swizzle Inn, which serves the best mussels I’ve ever had! Or, perhaps it relates to the free jug of swizzle (a rum-laced tropical concoction) they served us for staying in their apartment. Either way, it was all good 🙂
Another frugal step we took was to acquire 2 multi-day public transportation passes. These passes provided unlimited use of the bus and ferry system that will take you ANYWHERE on the island. Being that Bermuda is one of the safest places on the planet this unlimited transportation provided an easy way to do a self-guided tour with zero hassle or worry.
By now you may be asking: What does all this have to do with the title (Never a shortage of opportunities)?
During one of our excursions, exploring Bermuda’s Crystal and Fantasy Caves (highly recommended), we were speaking with the tour guide. He asked where we were staying, etc. After learning we were staying in the apartment of a local, he commented that this is an increasing trend they are seeing as travelers are realizing they can save a great deal of money by avoiding the island’s hotels and resorts.
He then asked if I had heard of Airbnb, which is a business based on this concept. I had not. And, I had completely forgotten about the conversation until just recently reading an article on Airbnb in the latest edition of Inc. Magazine, which you can access by clicking here.
The tag-line of the article on Airbnb reads:
Disruptive, brazen, and overall brilliant, the (possibly illegal) home-sharing empire has become the biggest lodging provider on Earth–earning it the title of Inc.’s 2014 Company of the Year.
Did you catch that? The biggest lodging provider on earth! All, from what would seem to have been a crazy idea that 3 guys ran with back in 2007. As stated in the article:
Seven years ago, they were guys with a website, three air mattresses, and ambitions that to many people sounded silly, naive, and reckless. Since then, they have revolutionized the way people think about travel, displaced the hospitality industry’s established players, and generated billions in revenue for themselves and their hosts.
In summary, Airbnb is now a mega-business based on the realized idea that individuals (like you and me, from around the world) can profit by making their property (an entire home or just a bedroom) available for rent via an online platform.
What is the value of doing so?
- Provides travelers with lodging options that are much cheaper than a hotel.
- Provides homeowners the opportunity to earn extra cash with their under-utilized assets (vacant home or bedroom(s)).
Just to reiterate. You too can do all of the above – RIGHT NOW!
So, what I had “thought” was a local / Bermuda-specific phenomena turns out to be a global trend that a company (Airbnb) has turned into a big/HUGE business! Sure, there are risks and obstacles in the business model. Show me a business that doesn’t have risks and obstacles!
Bottom-line: We live in a time when there are virtually unlimited opportunities to earn a living (and much, much more) by bringing new ideas to the marketplace, or by significantly improving products and services that are already available.
I’d suggest that a primary (but certainly not the ONLY) foundation for doing so would be building on what was covered in the prior post (The Future of Work – Is Here Now!). Airbnb certainly did!
In closing, realize this: Only YOU can take the necessary steps to live the life of YOUR dreams!
As such, you are encouraged to take your idea and RUN with it!
All the best!