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Hi Everyone, 

Hosts are the heart and soul of Airbnb. I want you to know we value you, we’re working every day to improve your hosting experience, and we’re listening to you. Recently, we updated our rebooking and refund policy to allow guests up to 72 hours to report travel issues, rather than 24 hours. Let me take you through our thinking as a company to get to this decision. 

 

As a two-sided marketplace, we are always putting ourselves in the shoes of both Hosts and guests. In this case, guests have been telling us 24 hours wasn’t enough time to reach out for help if something goes wrong. For example, if a guest wasn’t able to check in due to a malfunctioning lock, they may be more focused on getting settled in an alternative location and attending the event they traveled for. We also heard from Hosts that 24 hours often wasn’t enough time to resolve a guest’s concerns. For example, if a guest notified a Host that the air conditioner stopped working, it could take more than a day to contact a repair person and fix it. The 24-hour window was causing guests to feel like they had to cancel early, when more time would have been enough for Hosts to fully address the concern and keep the reservations.

 

We went through a similar assessment when we considered extending the filing period for Hosts to submit reimbursements requests. As part of AirCover—which includes $1 million in Host damage protection—if guests cause damage, you have 14 days to request reimbursement after they check out, even if other guests have already checked in.

 

I also want to assure you that we rigorously assess claims from guests in order to help protect you from fraudulent claims. And, we take action to hold guests accountable for those types of violations of our Community Standards. If a Host disagrees with our determination about a guest report, they may contest our decision and if after reviewing evidence provided by the Host, we agree with that Host, they will receive their payout for that reservation.

Your house rules are another important tool to help ensure the guest rebooking and refund policy is used as intended. House rules set and manage expectations for guests. For example, if you have a backyard pool, you might include a note that you make every attempt to keep the pool as clean as possible, but at times leaves and debris may end up on the surface. This can help guests understand why there may be leaves in the pool. 

 

Because of the importance of house rules, we’ve made them visible to guests when they book, and by booking, guests are agreeing to read and abide by them. House rules are also taken into account when guest refund claims are made, if relevant. Here are some helpful tips for writing and updating your house rules for guests.

 

We design all of our updates to help build trust, and will continue to do so as we actively listen to your feedback and concerns. I hope this note has addressed some of the questions I have heard. I want to end by thanking you for all that you do to provide the best possible hospitality for our guests.

 

 

Warmly, 

Catherine Powell
Airbnb Global Head of Hosting

394 Replies

Re: Our recent change to the guest refund policy

in
Stuttgart, Germany
Host Advisory Board Member

The payout is not changed - see previous comments.

Re: Our recent change to the guest refund policy

in
Nashville, TN
Level 3

Hi @Catherine-Powell, I’ve got a live case scenario actively playing out in regards to this thread, not from the perspective of a wronged guest, but myself as a host trying to utilize the much hyped AirCover feature. Our last group trashed our house and violated house / city rules by exceeding occupancy limits. Not to mention Airbnb’s party rule. Reservation was for 5, they ended up having many more “staying” (partying) on our property, at least for one night. We were already forced to reach out to them prior to the aforementioned night about one of their guest urinating in the front yard (neighbor called) + already exceeding their reservation count, albeit within a manageable number we could live with. They apologized and said things would be under control from here on out. We didn’t know until the next night via our exterior security feed that they had 12 people staying at our house. Turned out to be 12 to 14 coming and going throughout weekend. 

 

After going to great lengths in my AirCover Request to detail all the various ways this group violated house + city rules and the resulting damage, which was plenty, the Claims Ambassador asked for me to add everything I had just finished including in my request. Upon stating that this effort would be redundant, thus eating up more of my workable hours, I inquired about what exactly they still needed as my list of video screenshots/invoices/pics/notes far exceeded the ambassador’s request. I got crickets. I’ve now messaged 5 times, in light of an arbitrary April 16th deadline I was given. I reached out to an Airbnb customer service rep who was very nice but could’t help me outside of creating a ticket# 2020037853680, as it’s “a different department.”

 

@Catherine-Powell, what are my next steps besides reaching out to you, presuming you have the extra bandwidth to respond? I don’t expect you to have that extra time btw, just like I don’t have the extra time to be forced to track down a non-responsive claims ambassador. Thanks for your time. 

 

P.S. It would also help if videos could actually be upload to the Resolution portal (a technical question I can't get an answer to as well). 

 

P.S.S. Apologies in advance for the typos, I'm writing this as quick as possible so I can get back to work.

Re: Our recent change to the guest refund policy

in
Santa Margarita, CA
Level 2

This new change of policy has us paranoid as super hosts.  We feel the 72 hour policy is way beyond the necessary time needed to report an issue.    Can't help but feel like your opening the door to people purposely  booking places who will set up the home to have a " problem " that they will then report 3 days later.  Essentially getting a reduced rate / free 3 days of a rental .  What if someone purposely pulls a plug of an appliance or dirties sheets etc and blames the host ? 24 hours is more than enough time to report issue. We will live in paranoia the first 72 hours of every stay if that's the case. 

Re: Our recent change to the guest refund policy

in
North Carolina, United States
Level 7

Maybe Musk should buy this outfit, clean house, and create a balance respecting owners/hosts and not kowtowing to scammer and rule breaker "guests". 

Re: Our recent change to the guest refund policy

in
Phoenix, AZ
Level 1

I am looking for some technical assistance with the AirCover process.  I want to add a video to my claim.  The section of AirCover for evidence says to post pictures, videos, and receipts.  When I select that process and navigate to my video, they are unable to be loaded. I cannot find any information about format or size limits - which is my guess why it will not load. 

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