London, United Kingdom Community Manager
First off we want to wish a heartfelt thank you to last year’s board members, in the inaugural year of the board they played a pivotal role integrating with our teams and helping us keep day to day Host perspectives front and center in our work.
As we move into 2022 the Host Advisory Board mission remains as important as ever, giving Hosts a seat at the table to represent the voice of the community in shaping the future with Airbnb. They will continue to influence key Host policies, programs, and products that we launch.
We’re excited to have @Anna1403 , @Merrydith0, @Nutth0, @Omar202, @Pam3 , @Peter1, @Shinya0, @Susan208, @Till-and-Jutta0, @Vinícius0 and Pooja all returning from last year to continue serving and I hope you’ll join me in welcoming the new members…
@Claudia331, @Daniel1651, @Delphine348, @Felicity11 , @Jennifer3225, @Kirk124, @Michael-O-Reilly0, @Ted--Pauline-And-Keo0 , @Ronaldo-And-Carla0, @Francisco-and-Yajaira-Ho0, Sebastian, Deirdre and Nadia
You can expect to see our HAB members’ voices and perspectives represented in education and announcements we share throughout the year. We’re looking forward to seeing what we will accomplish together this year. You’ll probably have noticed some of the members posting around the CC already and contributing to our Hosting discussions.
HAB members represent the wide diversity of backgrounds and are selected due to their tremendous contributions to our Host Community. In order to get to know our 2022 HAB members better please visit the HAB landing page for more information.
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As our representatives between hosts and Airbnb can you tell us what work you have been doing around the issue that has been raised many times on these boards and elsewhere...Namely when a guest makes a safety complaint against a host, the host automatically has all their listing suspended, without notification or discussion.
Airbnb then refuses to inform the host about why the listing has been suspended or enter into discussions with the host.
In some cases this goes on for months, guests have their booking cancelled and the host loses all their income.
This could for example because a guest complains about CCTV - when this is clearly displayed in accordance with Airbnb's T&Cs or because a guest has held a party and the host complains about additional guests using the property.
Surely Airbnb should not be suspending a hosts listing until they have spoken to the host/confirmed that there is a safety breach.
I'm curious to know if the HAB had input into the new categories release, and if they all stand behind it as a good idea. I also sit on a board elsewhere and I'm well aware of the limitations of being able to speak openly.
Thanks for clarifying; I could not have expressed it better.
We also should not forget that all HAB members are engaged in their local communities. And like all 500 community leaders, we are involved in local politics and host issues, moderating groups, organizing meetups and workshops. That community work helps us to represent the entire host community better.
We are always happy about the warm welcome in the nine CC’s around the globe!
@Till-and-Jutta0 thank you for your support as I feel that we have got know you through the CC hosts zoom meetings. We know that you actually exist the same with @Daniel1651.
@Emilie Thank you for explaining what HAB work is and that there is CC also in other languages than english.
Being French, my natural expression is on the French CC even if I sometime participate in English CC which is of course the biggest one. I wish I could speak other languages enough to read and participate in all of them as the CC are a good way of getting in touch with other hosts around the world and discovering other cultures.
Hi @Robin4 and all,
I appreciate you sharing your honest thoughts and perceptions of the Host Advisory Board’s work and presence here on the Community Center so far this year.
We know that you’d like to hear from the HAB members on what they’re working on, however it can be quite challenging. Due to the nature of the topics, the members of the Board cannot always share and discuss the details of the work they have been doing. We understand how this can be interpreted as the HAB members not being active, but their work is happening around the clock. New policies, products and updates are put through to them, and they are attending workshops several times a week with various product and programme managers in order to help shape those, raise concerns and understand the real impact on the Host community. On top of that, they also remain Hosts and have to continue managing their listings and providing wonderful stays to their guests like the rest of you. This leaves them with very little time for anything else.
That being said, several HAB members have been participating on the Community Center as and when they can, whether that’s @Peter1 sharing a lot of interesting news articles and thoughts, many like @Delphine348 and @Till-and-Jutta0 talking with Hosts in other languages, and a couple sharing their experiences with sustainable hosting as part of our Festival. They are as present as they are able to be at the moment, and I can assure you that they are committed to bringing improvements to the platform and the Hosting community.
Speaking of Sustainability - this a topic that two HAB members in particular are working on as part of the board -@Felicity11 @Anna1403 could you maybe share a bit more on your work around this so far?
We will talk with the team that coordinate the Host Advisory Board to see if there is anything they can share, impending. I can’t say too much just yet but May is going to be very busy for updates!
@Emillie thank you for sharing the information regarding the HAB members and their challenges with different topics that can be interpreted differently.
With different rules set by governments around the world let alone how Airbnb hosts interpret with local rules, different type of dwellings, neighbourhoods, different nationalities of guests and what they expect or the guests own standard of living can or not be desired at times when they leave the premises as in a mess or are destructive.
Or guest have a negitive destructive nature with giving reviews low score or trying to claim money refunds because their expectations of the location or not reading the hosts rules. Thus, effecting the host or to extreme hosts being suspended with no communication between guest and host of a perceived view from the guests.
What I do like is reading the HAB members introduction of themselves, what they like, where they live around the world and how the environment may be affecting them. Whether is be the weather, local issues hosts experience in their locality or on Airbnb topics.
I am looking forward to the next chapter.
You do realize that without Hosts, there would be NO AirBnB. And with this being said, why are hosts the last to know, penalized first, and treated as the lowest on the totem pole? The website is amateurish, hides pet fees, and hides listings. And now we're being told there are top secret discussions that we either wouldn't understand or wouldn't like but y'all know best? How about an open HAB with open discussions. CS is a joke and the Feedback form goes into the ether never to be seen again. Support of hosts should be AirBnB's top priority, but it feels like it is near the bottom.
With the exception of Till and Jutta, there are many, many more hosts with greater tenure as hosts, more and better ratings and who are consistent and more frequent contributors to the CC than the members of the HAB. Given this, my question is how were HAB members selected given there were so many stronger candidates?
The whole process seems very opaque and, on the surface at least, my impression is that Airbnb selected members who they believed would essentially shut up and do as they were bidden rather than objectively assess and evaluate Airbnb's proposals.
Prove me wrong. I'll wait.
And Louise, a month has gone by and you are still waiting!
Louise, you are one of the most knowledgeable Airbnb hosts, not just here in Australia, but the world. You have the runs on the board and you understand exactly how this company runs. You don't shoot from the hip, you deal in facts and figures and your opinions are to be respected.
You along with me and most other experienced hosts here would have received the invite to apply to join the HAB when it was first floated. For your reasons, you didn't, just as I didn't. As a host I could see no tangible good coming out of it.
I am not trying to be disrespectful to the HAB members. Till and I think Ziggy were the only ones I got to meet via the regular Zoom meetings and I have no doubt they're into their HAB duties with all their heart and soul.
But this company have proved over the years, operational decisions from the boardroom come from accountants, strategist and annalists, they don't come from the rank and file. I know because for some time I was part of the Global Development Team. We were never asked for our opinions, we were given a set of options to make a choice from......"Which of the following options would you support, A,B,C or D". Never once was I as a host asked what I felt would improve my hosting.....I was simply given a set of hosting options that Airbnb were prepared to accept! The road-map had already been fleshed out, we were just haggling about the details!
And that is why I chose not to be involved this time around, I have got enough going on in my life and if am going to volunteer my time, I want to feel it is being helpful and useful! I don't want to simply be another company PR person, I want to do what so many others here want to do, be able to be a good Airbnb host!
Had I joined something like that, my first objective would have been to send out a questionnaire to the top 100 or so hosts here on the CC asking for a breakdown of their 5 wish list hosting items, and advising others in the group to do the same. That way a proper hosting strategy could have been put together with meaningful recommendations for the company. You never know, if there was enough clout there they might have actually taken some serious notice instead of shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic.
Nobody has ever approached me or anyone else that I am aware of and asked for my opinions. I wish the current HAB all the best, your hearts are in the right place and it would be lovely to think that you can effect changes that will help the hosting community, but every time we want a progress report, we run into a wall of secrecy....and that is unfortunate, it doesn't instill us with confidence!
You are right Louise, the whole operation is very opaque!
I am usually active on the French language Community Center and leader of the Seine et Marne (Fontainebleau, Disneyland Europe) Airbnb Community club.
I created an environmental non profit association in my village with 14 people wanting to stop the water treatment plant sludge application in our fields. We federated 200 people and won the challenge.
Hosting since 2020 first French lockdown, I am still learning through different social exchanges: here on the CC, FB groups, club exchanges, Tourism office meeting...
I engaged in the European Commission consultancy on Fair STR market where I took the opportunity to express my voice as a host during the workshop they organized. I also joined the Hosts French Federation created in 2020 to become our voice soon for any government or cities regulation projects, work in progress and worth it ! I am trying to be a sustainable host and aiming a Green Key label when I will be ready to apply.
I am very glad to join the Host Advisory Board this year and lucky that some of the 2021 members are still there helping me to fit in quickly.
In life, I tend to act when I want things change, so being part of the HAB seems to me a good opportunity to express hosts voices closer to Airbnb teams, even if some of you think that this voice is low.
I believe I can rely on all community members to share their concerns in a constructive way so that I can understand better what I should stand for.
HAB members are coming from 17 countries around the world, exchanges and cultures are so fruitful and benevolent.
Aloha! I'm from the Big Island of Hawaii. So glad to be here to help and contribute so that all in the Airbnb Community have a positive experience.
@Merrydith0 from Tasmania welcome back for 2022, thanks for giving your an update of working with other host ambassadors. Yes I can see that there can be many issues from different countries, as countries have different government, state and local council rules which we abide by. Cultural expectations and personal differences can be difficult to deal with and access because what is accepted by one culture is not by another.
Today, Australia is made up from over 300 cultures and 48% of its people were born overseas. As a host one, has to have an open mind for interpretations and communication which plays an importatant role.
Yes, I find some of the changes can benefit us or can be a hinderence. I use IB and answer the booking with a welcome note. Then send a note a week before to keep in touch with address and any instructions reminding the check in time. Yes, most of the guests don't make contact again unless I prompt them with my messages. I feel when guests make their booking they have made an inpersonal contact except answering questions if asked or agree to the rules set by hosts. I think some hosts might need more assurance but we are all different and this is when issues can arise.
I am not sure but I think some of the issues that some hosts have is because they are managed from a distance. We live onsite and are here to deal if any problem that may arise.
I must say the calender (joined 2020) I have 1 and is on the ipad is friendly as it shows the month and can be scroll down and see upcoming months. The 2nd is on the laptop (updated programm) and I find this calender not as friendly as it scrolls across the page. Maybe it is the user (me).
Thanks again to all the Host Ambassadors trying to their best by volunteering to help Airbnb to go forward for hosts from around the world who may have different expectations, issues and ideas of how Airbnb should operate.
Airbnb is a service that provides me with paying guests to supplement my income without private advertisement, or having to pay for an agent and I have controll over who stays in my Airbnb.
@Merrydith0 Thanks for chiming in here.
There are plenty of things Airbnb could do for hosts that we have been asking them to do for years, which is totally ignored, that have nothing whatsoever to do with guests. So how about the HAB bring that stuff to the table if everything else is such a balancing act?
There is no reason whatsoever why they have to keep making changes to our hosting pages, which are more and more difficult to locate things on, where things are hidden and non-intuitive to find, and where every time they change things it wastes hosts' time trying to figure out where they have moved something to.
The changes to the calendar make it difficult to see properly by those whose vision isn't so great anymore. This has been given as feedback to Airbnb and ignored.
There is no reason to bury our house rules, cancellationn pollicies and health and safety section way down at the bottom of the page where most guests never bother to scroll down to. This benefits neither hosts nor guests and leads to problems for both.
What it sounds like is that the HAB is only given things to work on that Airbnb wants you to have input into, not have you actually bring hosts' concerns to the table, therefore, with all due respect, it doesn't appear that the HAB is representing us in any effective way, just repeating Airbnb's "it's tricky" excuses.
@Till-and-Jutta0 What about one of the basic issues for all hosts which hosts have been complaining about for years- the constant revamping of our hosting pages, which become mmore and more difficult to navigate with every pointless change.
Why do we have to search for the monthly calendar view, for instance? Why is there not just a line in the menu which says "monthly calendar" to click on? Why does getting to that calendar require clicking on the name of our listing to the left of the monthly calendar, which is completely non-intuitive and no one would ever figure out on their own?
Why has Airbnb not listened to all the posts here saying the changes to that calendar are terrible and it's very hard to read for anyone but young people with great vision?
Why are programmers designing the hosting pages and always fiddling with them and changing things when they have no idea what works for hosts? Why are they not being advised by hosts?
We still have zero idea what the HAB is working on, but "launches" are not how we need the HAB to represent us. We need things fixed which don't work for us as they currently are.
Hi @Sarah977 ,
We've talked about this before but for the benefit of any viewing the thread - changes, fixes, new products etc all the things that the HAB are consulted on for their representation of the Host community don't always happen immediately or even launch at all. Part of any product roadmap (for any business for that matter) is accepting that most things don't make it to market.
This can be due to legislations and laws specific, not just the territories it's launched in, but around the medium as a whole (sorry to share a UK link but there's some great reading on how online reviews have to be handled, for example https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/online-reviews-and-endorsements-advice-for-businesses/onl...).
It can also be because along the way the product changed to a degree that it no longer resolves or answers the reason it was being created for so has to go back into development.
And then there are small rollouts or pilots where the product/service can be put into Hosts hands and both the user behaviour data and Host feedback can be reviewed to better understand the real world application.
As it stands, Airbnb does not make public what products/services are currently in the pipeline for several reasons - managing the Host community's expectations with what a product can and should do before it is finalised, ensuring we are prioritising any products/services to fit the whole user bases needs, and ensuring we are able to be adaptive as a company as unexpected things emerge that need support. This also means @Till-and-Jutta0 , Host Advisory Board members, and indeed many of our CC community that have attended our Host Workshops, are not able to always share as much as they want (no matter how exciting what they are working on is!)
The same goes for us, your community management team.
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