Rival apps battle to become NYC’s ‘Airbnb for pools’

As New York bakes in the summer heat, two companies are fighting to become the city’s go-to “Airbnb for pools.” 

Swimply — a Long Island-based swimming pool-sharing company whose backers include a former Airbnb executive and two Silicon Valley venture capital firms — has held the lead in tri-state pool rentals since last summer. 

But now, a French competitor called Swimmy is taking on the New York market. The company, which has 120,000 users in Europe, told The Post that it plans to launch fully in the New York area in time for Labor Day weekend. 

Both companies let homeowners rent out their pools to strangers by the hour and make money by charging commissions. 

Last summer, one Mahwah, NJ, pool owner told The Post he was booking as much as $10,000 in rentals through Swimply in a single week. 

Swimmy, which has 120,000 users in Europe, is expanding into the New York area.
Stephen Yang

Now, Swimmy is pushing for a piece of the pool rental pie. But despite its plans for a full Labor Day launch, the company listed just three pools in the New York City area as of Tuesday — compared to 126 on its competitor’s site. 

“We are really pushing for pool hosts in NYC to list their pools,” Swimmy spokesperson Camille Passi told The Post.

She did not say whether the company is offering incentives to encourage Swimply users to switch to Swimmy.

Some pool owners say they have booked $10,000 worth of rentals in a single week.
Stephen Yang

Passi added that all bookings include an insurance policy covering up to $1 million in injuries and property damage, a step the company hopes will help convince reluctant owners to list their pools online. 

Both Swimmy and Swimply are also available in other sun-soaked US states including California, Texas and Florida. 

Some New Yorkers told The Post last summer they could charge as much as $125 an hour for pool access through Swimply — and said demand had soared as coronavirus restrictions prevented New Yorkers from vacationing at far-flung beaches and resorts.

Both pool rental apps are also available in California, Texas and Florida.
REUTERS

Additional reporting by Doree Lewak