How we’re protecting you when things go wrong

Official Account

How we’re protecting you when things go wrong

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Many of you have told us how much you love sharing your space with guests. Beyond the financial rewards, you’re inspired by the personal connections you make with people from all over the world.


Of course, none of that’s possible if you don’t feel protected while you host—you want Airbnb to help prevent things from going wrong and to be available in the rare but unfortunate moments when they do. We hear you, and we wanted to share some of the work we’re doing to enhance the safety of our hosts and broader community.


Ramping up our commitment to community standards

We recently announced our new Guest Standards Policy, which will introduce a system for tracking bad guests. When a guest fails to meet one of the standards outlined in the policy, they'll receive a warning. If the behavior continues, it could lead to suspension or removal from the platform.

These guest standards build upon existing policies we already have in place to address the more serious trust and safety issues that result in immediate removal from the platform. We’re enhancing our system to better monitor guests who engage in less serious misconduct, so that we can educate these guests and take appropriate action to improve our community.


By setting clear standards, staffing teams to take action, and putting technology in place to track noncompliance, we expect to improve overall guest behavior and increase community trust.


Learn more about our enhanced guest standards

Designing tools & features that support you

Even with these standards in place, there will be times when things go wrong. We know it’s painful when they do, and we want you to feel like we have your back. Our team has been working on ways to support you in those moments, and we wanted to share some new features with you.


Urgent Support Line
We recently began piloting our new Urgent Support Line in the U.S. and plan to expand to more countries next year. If you’re in the U.S. with early access through the Airbnb app and you’re experiencing an urgent matter related to your security or safety—like if a guest refuses to leave at checkout—you can tap the “Call Airbnb's Urgent Support Line" button in the Safety Center (available via the Profile tab) to quickly connect to a specialist for help. Keep in mind that the Urgent Support Line button is designed to be available only for active reservations, from the day before check-in to the day after checkout. You can also access the Safety Center via the shield icon at the top of the Host Inbox.


Local emergency line

We know that guests traveling in unfamiliar countries may not know how to contact local emergency services, so we’ve also launched an in-app emergency call button. This button provides a direct line to local law enforcement and emergency services. We’ve already rolled it out in the U.S. and China. We’re adding 29 more countries by the end of the year and even more countries in 2020.


Live chat

For non-urgent issues, we’ve heard from you that you want the convenience of live chat. So we’re excited that we were able to introduce that feature to English and Mandarin speakers this year, with plans to roll it out in seven more languages next year. Right now, it’s the fastest way to get the help you need for things like updating your calendar or adjusting your pricing.


Remember: Many of these features are still being tested, so some people and regions don’t have access to features, and the product experience and placement of features may change as we iterate and improve. We test new features first so that we can figure out what works best before expanding access. If you’re not seeing the Urgent Support Line or local emergency line, for example, you’ll likely get access at a later phase of the rollout.

Strengthening our customer support teams & processes

Of course, these new features are only as effective as the teams that support them, which is why we’ve prioritized growing and restructuring our customer support team. Here are some of the changes:


A larger, more focused customer support staff

Just this year, we added thousands of new support agents around the globe, and we’ve reorganized and refocused the teams. We’ve set it up so that the more experienced an agent, the more complex the issues he or she will handle. So if, for example, you’re dealing with a guest who refuses to leave, you’ll now reach an agent who specializes in dealing with issues like this without having to explain your issue to multiple agents along the way. 


More empathy and efficiency in claims

We’ve heard from you that agents handling claims could be more empathetic, and that you’re frustrated by how long it can take to resolve an issue. We hear you, which is why we’ve been training our claims specialists to better understand why these types of issues can feel so personal and upsetting to hosts. We’ve also implemented a process that speeds up resolution and payout for hosts who are more tenured on the platform.


Greater consistency across the board

Hosts also tell us they want more consistency in how their cases are dealt with. We’re working on improving our workflows to help ensure that the same issues are handled the same way every time.

What you can do

From communicating clearly to using helpful technology, here are some ideas we’ve collected from hosts about what they like to do to help ensure safety and great experiences with their guests.


Set clear expectations

Whether it’s in your House Rules, listing description, or messages, be clear about how you want guests to behave in your space. It’s particularly important to specify your rules around parking, extra guests, and smoking so we know if it should be considered “unauthorized” under the new Guest Standards Policy. By sharing that kind of information up front, you can help confirmed guests understand your expectations and deter potential guests who may not be a great fit.


When a guest fails to uphold these standards, it’s important to begin by addressing the issue with them directly—this is often the quickest path to resolution. In all cases, be ready to provide evidence that demonstrates a rule has been broken, whether that’s photos of excessive trash left in your space, an emailed complaint from a neighbor, or some other documentation.


Get to know your guests

Hosts have told us that they love connecting with the people they’re welcoming into their space. You can use our pre-booking message feature to ask questions and remind them of your House Rules and other guidelines—we’ve increased the character count on the pre-booking message, so you can include even more information than before. Greeting your guests in person can go a long way toward setting the right tone, which may also help you resolve issues more quickly if they arise.


Consider installing a noise monitoring device

If noise from large groups is a concern, a noise monitoring device may help put your mind at ease. Airbnb has recently offered discounts on noise monitoring devices for hosts in certain markets, and will be continuing to explore new technologies to help you protect your space. Keep in mind that these devices don’t actually record sound—they simply monitor the decibel level in your space and alert you via an app when it hits a certain threshold (which you can customize). Just be sure you let guests know if and where you’ve installed monitoring devices of any kind. You can place signs near the devices themselves and should mention them in your listing description, House Rules, or house manual.

The journey ahead

For the Airbnb community to thrive, there has to be trust: in hosts, in guests, and in Airbnb as a company. These changes are an important step toward preserving that trust, but we know there’s still work to be done. It’s a journey, and we appreciate your feedback along the way.

134 Replies 134

Thats sad and I would feel pretty annoyed with Airbnb. A hotel can charge your card for damages so why can't Airbnb? Without us hosts then Airbnb would have nothing.

I wonder if we should collectively reach out to Wall Street Journal about our experience as hosts with AirBNB.  We too, had a similar experience.  We didn’t have Superhost status but they somehow blocked my calendar so our property wasn’t coming up.  I had to manually go in and unblock all the dates.  When I called to get assistance, they said I did it.   Seriously!  I sat there and blocked my calendars for years out!?!!  Now that I’ve posted this comment, I wonder what punishment AirBNB will impose on us this time.

They blocked my entire guest area (3 bedrooms) this summer and wouldn't admit it.  Today the latest support staff said they had to investigate.  Oh yeah.  Right.

I had that happen to me and I kept blaming my last guest to them getting into my account somehow! They get you back for wanting them to do the right thing!

Level 1
Quincy, IL

Oddly I was told Airbnb’s insurance policy could do NOTHING when I found a guest had robbed me. Just an “I’m sorry that happened to you.” 
As a single, female, live-in host, I was extremely disappointed. 

Level 1
Barrington, IL

Most of my bookings come from AirBnB and I have enjoyed working with you.  However, VRBO’s policy of requiring a refundable security deposit or the purchase of a non-refundable insurance policy is fantastic.  I have had a few bad guests from AirBnB, mostly with children, who have broken doors, smashed the wicker  on a chair, broken off a piece of blind necessitating a whole new blind, driven away with the golf cart plugged in (destroying the plug to recharge) etc.  I truly believe AirBnB should institute those requirements, as well as stating on their booking site that all guests are required to immediately inform the host when an accident happens.  My guest who broke the golf cart plug wasn’t discovered until two guests later after I had given him a good review.

I pride myself on providing a great property with everything in good working order and if I don’t know of a problem in time to get a handyman in to repair it before the incoming guest, that is not fair to me or my incoming guests.  Because of VRBO’s policy, I have never had an issue with a current guest without them telling me of the problem so it could be fixed ASAP.

In my in-house guest book/instructions,  as well as my directions sent before their visit, I mention to please inform me immediately if they find something broken, so as not to be blamed personally.  However, the guest that broke the closet door said he found it that way; I know this was untrue because my handyman had just repaired it and my housekeeper said it was fine.  He was also the same guest that ruined the golf cart plug.  Both repairs cost $160, which I asked him to pay, but he hinted he’d give a bad review because one of the two pools was being repaired and the one they were supposed to use was crowded.  Thus, I ate the cost of these repairs.  Without a doubt, people are more conscientious if a security deposit is at stake.


I have had children stay at my rental and have suffered damage  and I refuse for animals as well as children. Do not accept them and don't feel guilty about not letting them period!

Will they actually book if you have a really high sec. deposit?  I also think Airbnb should provide immediate background searches just as soon as someone books.  If they don't do it, they should make the service free for hosts.


Level 2
St. Catharines, CA

All of this talk about being able to reach you more easily and no central phone number mentioned. What is your phone number?

Good question and no answer ... all talk!

No wonder people are tired of this organisation.

These Airbnb contact numbers are for Non-Urgent issues

+1 (415) 800-5959

+1 (855) 424-7262

Level 2
KBH, Denmark

So about 1.5 years ago my 85 year old mom who rents out her property in Marin on airbnb came home to find her living room destroyed after a party- booze on the floor, sofa stained with alcohol and food, scratches on her hardwood floor from a girl who threw a party at the house. As a host myself, I began helping her with the comms to airbnb- she was very stressed and needed help. It was the worst process ever- she was treated poorly, the system was bulky and off putting to file the complaint, almost as if to make you give up. Then after an arduous process, she got $2000 which was only enough to cover part if the floor repair. The sofa was too old acc to airbnb (but beautiful as that living room is a hardly used separate room). She has now covered it with sheets to hide the damage. After this incident I tell everyone who rents on airbnb to do so at their own risk- dont trust the coverage. I still rent, but knowing that nobody has got my back!  (Were both superhosts btw)!

I had an experience this summer that was horrific and I was made to feel like I was the one at fault the next morning when I called Airbnb! I had an reservation coming the next day that were my regulars when this instant book showed up! They then said they wanted to cook some chicken so I let them on the barbecue when I came upstairs after getting their room is finished they had over 30 people there I got a little upset by that of course they said they were just there to have the barbecue with them because they were their family! That was a lie! ThI had an reservation coming the next day that were my regulars when this instant book showed up! They then so they wanted to cook some chicken so I left them on the barbecue when I came upstairs after getting their rooms finished they had over 30 people there I got a little upset by that of course they said they were just there to have the barbecue with them because they were their family! That was a lie! Mind you I have taken some instant book off my listings and it somehow get keeps getting turned back on! That when someone makes a reservation and if you cancel it it goes against you even if it’s their fault! This was a horrific deal that I can’t even explain there’s so much detail I was told to go to my room and shut the door he vomited in my beds they were gang members they saying outside of my home with the radio blaring till 330 In the morning it goes on and on when I had gang members take over my whole house on an instant book that had signed up that day destroyed my house and then deactivated their account The very next day when they got home as to not be held responsible! for a 10 person reservation and had over 40 people that showed and said if I called the police I’d regret it! I didn’t feel like anyone had my back!

Not nice and Airbnb should've done something for you. I would've called the police and kicked them out and charged them with Utter to Threat.


airbnb does NOT have SUPERHOST'S backs! it's like being in a bad relationship that you can't financially afford to get out of