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San Franciscans Welcome Dreamforce Attendees by Price-Gouging Them on Airbnb

That'll be $1,200 for a two-bedroom apartment. Per night.

Since yesterday afternoon, the price of this Airbnb host's two-bedroom has bounced from $1,250 to $1,275 to $1,325. Now it's practically a steal at $1,200, right?


With an estimated 160,000 visitors in town for Dreamforce, the annual conference put on by cloud-computing juggernaut Salesforce, hotel rooms are as scarce as, well, apartments in this town. A Celebrity Infinity luxury cruise ship docked on the Embarcadero has even been called in to host 1,100 in a temporary floating hotel dubbed the DreamBoat. Out-of-luck stragglers who need a place to store their own personal Internets of things can still find lodging on Airbnb, however—for a price.

Take the pad being hawked by Darren of SoMa, for example. His 12th-story, two-bedroom apartment, just four blocks from Moscone Center, is currently going for a whopping $1,200 per night, a princely sum that’s only slightly discounted from the $1,325 per-night price the listing carried on Monday afternoon. (Update: as of Tuesday afternoon, the price has dropped again, to $1,000.) According to the listing, the apartment can accommodate up to six people. That may not be totally realistic for colleagues traveling together on business (unless some of them are meant to sleep there vicariously, you know, in the cloud?). Assume one person per bedroom plus one on the couch, and you get to a grand total of $1,460 per person for the duration of the conference. Somebody’s going to be making bank this week!

And it’s not just Darren who’s thinking like an, ahem, entrepreneur right now. Here is a three-bedroom house in Russian Hill available for $1,450 per night. There’s also a private bedroom in Ingleside going for $500 per night. (Really, $500 per night for Ingleside?) You know the world’s truly gone mad when a four-bedroom house in South San Francisco asking $1,000 per night can arguably be considered a reasonably priced rental.

And we gotta hand it to this guy, who couldn’t really resist the opportunity to exploit Dreamforce attendees, despite not having a fully furnished apartment. He’s asking $500 per night for a private room right across the street from the conference. “I don't really have furniture throughout the condo yet," he writes, "but I am renting out the master bedroom.” 

Of course, all will be back to normal this weekend, when the city will wake up from this Dreamforce-induced hospitality nightmare, and our crew of Airbnb opportunists will be out of luck until next year. It’s not like San Francisco is hosting any large-scale event where throngs of people will visit for a few days in the near future. 

Oh right. Shoot.


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