Man Creates Muslim Version Of Airbnb After Friends And Family Face Discrimination On The Site
“What Muzbnb does for me as a consumer, it gets rid of a lot of problems.”
After hearing horror stories from friends and family about their experiences with discrimination on Airbnb, D.C. native Hadi Shakuur created Muzbnb, a Muslim-friendly version of Airbnb.
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Unlike Airbnb, Muzbnb includes filters that target houses near accessible halal food and mosques. The houses are also alcohol and pork-free, and offer prayer rugs for guests to use. Guests will be able to start booking stays in one of the 100 houses across the United States, Australia, Malaysia, and Indonesia starting in February.
“What Muzbnb does for me as a consumer, it gets rid of a lot of problems,” Haroon Waseem, who registered his home on Muzbnb in 2017, told NBC News. “It allows us Muslims to enter the shared-living space area in a more Islamic way.”
Airbnb spokesman Nick Papas provided the following statement to NBC News in response to the criticism of the site: “Our mission is to create a world where anyone can belong anywhere. Under our Open Doors policy, we will ensure anyone who believes they have been discriminated against has a place to stay.”
However, Muslim Airbnb user Hasan Brohi recounted a situation to NBC News concerning an attempted homestay using the site that was "racist in nature."
When discussing booking a home, Brohi recounted how the host, “Contacted back and said ‘I don’t think this is going to work.' It just seemed from her tone and lot of the comments she made – it just seemed very racist in nature.’”
Muzbnb aims to eliminate this experience, but not necessarily by excluding non-Muslims.
“The main point of Muzbnb is to be welcoming to everyone but also have everyone be welcoming and non-discriminatory toward people of faith,” Shakuur said. “But obviously we want to cater to this group that has been blatantly bigoted on Airbnb.”
Shakuur explained that he hopes to add more houses and available features to Muzbnb in the near future, as well as featuring homes in areas highly populated by Muslims. With Muslims creating $145 billion of international tourist spending in 2015, the market is open and willing to accept their buying power.