The gay accommodation agency enjoy bed & breakfast, better known as ebab, celebrated its 20th anniversary in August this year. The idea for the private accommodation service originated from a volunteer project at the gay information and consulting center “Mann-O-Meter e.V.” in Berlin. Among others, visitors of the “Mann-O-Meter” were Berlin travelers looking for a cheap place to sleep. The volunteers took care of the communication between guests and hosts, but the rising demand was soon too much to be managed by them. Therefore, Uwe Hagemann, who served as a volunteer in the project, founded the first private accommodation agency for lesbians, gays and their friends in August 1996.
The satisfaction of the guests quickly resulted in requests for rooms in other cities. The offer grew year after year and was soon not only limited to guest rooms. Apartments, holiday houses and hostels were added. Today, ebab offers accommodations in 560 cities and 69 countries.
In its 20th anniversary year, there were already some changes. Since January this year, Paul Eppner is the new owner and CEO of ebab. Much more obvious is the new website. Paul Eppner explains: “As the first agency on the market, ebab has constantly developed and set standards. With our new website, we continue on this path consistently. Special emphasis was given to the wishes and needs of our guests and hosts.”
The new site differs enormously from the previous website, and also from those of the competitors. The focus is on the large map, which gives users a quick and comprehensive overview of all accommodations in the destination of their choice. The presentation of each accommodation focuses in particular on the pictures, making sure that potential guests get a good first impression of their desired accommodation. The accommodation profiles are complemented by a short and standardized description of ebab, allowing guests an easy comparison of the various accommodations, as well as by an individual text of the host. In addition, there is a profile picture of the host, information on how quickly the host answers to booking requests, and of course reviews from previous guests.
But not everything is new. “Of great importance to us was and is the price transparency for the guests,” explains Paul Eppner. “We show our guests immediately at a glance, how much the the desired accommodation costs. On our website, there are no hidden costs or prices which increase click-by-click, as it is the case at other websites.”
All that shows that ebab finds a way to stay true to itself and to improve the service at the same time. A perfect basis for the first gay accommodation agency to be well positioned for the next 20 years.