Skift Take clearly operates in Airbnb's shadow in short-term rentals. Although long-term stays are currently a hot commodity, is tardy in enabling such capabilities. That's a fitting symbol for the current state of play.

Series: Dennis' Online Travel Briefing

Dennis' Online Travel Briefing

Editor’s Note: Every Wednesday, Executive Editor and online travel rockstar Dennis Schaal will bring readers exclusive reporting and insight into the business of online travel and digital booking, and how this sector has an impact across the travel industry.

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Online Travel This Week Imagine you are Glenn Fogel, the CEO of both Booking Holdings and, and on December 9 your company was the clear market leader in online travel with an $86 billion market cap. The next day Airbnb burst onto Nasdaq and its stock at one point that day reached a $109 billion valuation, and flirted with $100 billion all day. OK, at market close Tuesday, the two rivals' valuations were a dead heat — $89.6 billion for Booking Holdings and $88.6 billion for Airbnb. Stock prices go up and down, but the point is that Wall Street thinks Airbnb will be a formidable competitor for Booking, or might even claim the top leadership rung. That raises the question: Does Booking have what it takes to compete with Airbnb in short-term rentals? Or perhaps, the question might more appropriately be: Does Airbnb have what's required to challenge Booking as a well-rounded lodging-booking company, let alone a full-service online travel agency? Booking, which prided itself for years on having an ample but mostly under-the-radar short-term rental business, primarily in the form of European apartment-hotels and similar inventory at the time, clearly trails Airbnb in short-term rentals today by an order of magnitude. Dan Wasiolek, a Morningstar analyst, estimated that