Sharing economy travel options have never been more popular, according to the third annual Allianz Travel Insurance Sharing Economy Index by Allianz Global Assistance USA. The survey found that 50 percent of travelers are likely to use services like Uber, Lyft and Airbnb this year compared to 36 percent in 2016 and 17 percent in 2015.
Growth seems to be correlated with familiarity with the services. Since 2015, awareness has increased across all sharing economy services with Airbnb showing 51 percent, up 32 percent from 2015; Uber 73 percent up 38 percent; HomeAway 30 percent up 20 percent; Feastly 16 percent, up 12 percent; and GetAround 18 percent up 11 percent from 2015. Lyft saw the highest familiarity increase with 56 percent like to use the service, up 41 percent from 2015.
Americans are also increasingly viewing sharing economy as a better value compared to traditional options at 35 percent; up nine percent from 2016.
However, only 17 percent of Americans say they are “very trusting” of the services, with the majority (83 percent) at least somewhat skeptical (48 percent somewhat trustworthy/ 13 percent not very trustworthy/ 5 percent not at all trustworthy/17 percent not sure).
Some hesitation, according to the company, might be the result of negative stories in the news. One in three Americans say they are less likely to use the services because of latest reports of safety and regulations concerns. On the other hand, half reported that the news has no impact on their decision to use ride-sharing services.
The Sharing Economy Index has been conducted every summer since 2015 by national polling firm Ipsos Public Affairs on behalf of Allianz Global Assistance USA. Allianz Global Assistance offers travel insurance through most major U.S. airlines, travel agents, online travel agencies, other travel suppliers and directly to consumers.