I am embarrassed by the entitlement some of my fellow hosts are having during COVID-19 epidemic. The world does not revolve around your rental property or mine! Airbnb has my full support in issuing 100% refunds during this time.
This entitlement to thinking Airbnb should pay you according to your cancellation policy is absurd. All of us are “self employed” with Airbnb, we pay them a small percentage to advertise, showcase and handle our bookings.
There is nothing more important to me then my health, the health of others in my community and the health of my guests! Welcoming guests to my property right now could potentially expose them, myself and my community to this daily growing virus. We don’t know if they have been exposed to the virus and they don’t know if I have!
I have a feeling you would still be complaining even if they would go with your cancellation policy. This is a global problem and their are people out there financially suffering much more than you are! Airbnb or any other rental company should never be considered your main source of income period! There...rant over
I hope everyone comes out better and stronger at the end of all of this. Most of us have that Superhost cape on, so now is the time to use it and fight through this!!
I plan on using this break to get to all the little details I have wanted to take care of in my rental space. Things like repainting some trim and baseboards, clean every window inside and out along with some caulking where have drafts coming from. I also plan on taking some new pictures of my space and use them to help bring some life back to my listing once we get back up and running.
Henry and I have just started... and are planning to take "spring cleaning" to a different level. Re-organizing EVERYTHING, re-thinking some of our storage methods and options, intense cleaning and small touch ups here and there. Not just guest spaces or shared spaces, but our private rooms too. Lol~
And since we are home-share hosts, it's nice to have our home all to ourselves for such a long stretch of time - although sometimes we do miss having a guest to chat with over coffee or share some of our dinner (Henry always cooks too much).
Entitled? You have no idea what you are talking about.
Airbnb has made available to hosts one of three cancellation policies to choose from...strict, moderate, or flexible. Now think about that. I, as a host, select one of these cancellation policies. Airbnb's created these cancellation policies. Not the host. This is a legal contract...an agreement between the parties involved, guest, host, and Airbnb. The guest knows exactly what the cancellation policy is related to their stay. Therefore, the guest knows that if they cancel their reservation the applicable cancellation policy will be enforced (or should I say, should be enforced). The host doesn't expect any MORE or LESS than that. It is what was agreed upon.
More to the point, and reiterating what is stated above, Airbnb set up these cancellation policies. And, there's where the problem lies. Airbnb suddenly changed the rules of engagement. They took care of the guest, but they forgot their other customer...the host.
So, what should happen? Airbnb decided that 100% will be refunded to the guest (related to the Coronavirus cancellation policy) . This was wrong to do, obviously. Should the guest be asked to give up to 50% back to the host? Absolutely NOT. Airbnb handled this whole thing poorly. Therefore, they should pay the hosts the amount due (based on the level of the cancellation policy the host has in place). Think about that: Airbnb would be an all-around hero. The guest gets their 100% refund and the host keeps their business going by getting what they should receive based on the level of cancellation.
Now back to you comment regarding entitlement. Where does the entitlement lie? It's with Airbnb. And yet, Airbnb doesn't even have to come up with the money. No, the host does that, or should I say the host is forced to do that. How convenient! Airbnb saves the day!
Some reports say the COVID-19 pandemic could go on for another year or two. Let's say Airbnb extends the 100% refund into May, June, July and beyond. Are you prepared to have no income for that amount of time? Doubtful.
So don't attack other hosts who feel Airbnb cancellation policies should be honored and not canceled whenever the company decides to do so.
Competitors like VRBO and Homeaway are honoring their cancellation policies, as they should.
We have laws, rules, policies for a purpose. They protect all of us. Not just some of us.
Entitlements are always one sided and unfair. In the end they hurt us all. Imagine if this continues what will happen. Host will start to leave Airbnb. Their inventory will be reduced as a result. Hosts will find other websites to list their vacation properties (which is already happening).
Business only works when its win/win.
@Doug149 Not sure who you are directing this at but sorry, your reasoning is flawed. Airbnb's policy with the hosts overrides your cancellation policy with the guest. (I'm a host too, affected by the policy). The rules didn't change, they were always there and all hosts agreed to them when signing on to the platform.
It does not matter because the contracts are unfair and we do not any have reasonable alternative. Your point would be compelling if the online travel agency market was divided into 10 companies with equal market share. It is not. Two companies control 85% of the market and there is really no competition on service fees or policies. Not a coincidence. We don't deal with AirBnB or Booking.com because they are good partners. They are despised evil necessities.
My sentiments exactly,
But they are now going one further.
Guests who are booking out side of the Corona virus extenuating circumstance policy are being advised if a host does not approve a 100% refund they are able to apply for the full refund under their standard extenuating Circumstance policy. I had this happen to me today and the airbnb rep actually messaged me to tell me he had told the guest what she could do. This is even after the guest had said on their message platform that she was willing to pay a part cancellation fee just not all of it. Plus she hasn't even made her final payment.
@Doug149 "Airbnb suddenly changed the rules of engagement. They took care of the guest, but they forgot their other customer...the host."
No, Airbnb didn't "suddenly" do this. They've been taking care of the guests at the expense of hosts for a long time. It's their M.O. No one except newbies should be surprised.
To all of you banging on and on with the obsequious "Oh but it's Airbnb's policy,, so that means it's gospel and we must all obey without question" spiel...
You're clearly oblivious to the fact that,, on foot of a case brought by the Norwegian Consumer Authorities in July of 2018, Airbnb have already been forced by the European Commission to amend several of their T&Cs to bring them into line with European laws, on the basis that they were "unfair, misleading, deceptive and illegal" (Commissioner Jourova)
A number of Airbnb's terms and conditions do not comply with the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive, the Unfair Contract Terms Directive, and the Regulation on the jurisdiction in civil and commercial matters. Therefore the European consumer authorities and the Commission have demanded from Airbnb a number of changes. The company has until the end of August to present their proposals. Once Airbnb proposes solutions to rectify this, the Commission and the EU consumer authorities will review the proposed changes. If they are not considered satisfactory, Airbnb could face an enforcement action
Airbnb's terms of services should be brought into conformity with European consumer law. The Unfair Contract Terms Directive requires that standard terms and conditions do not create a significant imbalance between the parties' rights and obligations,
Dumb-ass as I may be, it sure seems to me that Airbnb's gross mishandling of this situation has indeed created "a significant imbalance between the parties' rights and obligations". And very much so, thereby violating the Unfair Contract Terms Directive, yet again. Looks like it's time for Airbnb to do a bit more explaining to the EU Commission. .
Another couple of tidbits from that same ruling..
Airbnb cannot unilaterally change the terms and conditions without clearly informing consumers in advance and without giving them the possibility to cancel the contract
Airbnb's policy on refunds, compensation and the collection of damage claims should be clearly defined and should not deprive users from their right to activate the available legal remedies
Remember people.. just because Airbnb says something is so, doesn't necessarily make it so. But y'all feel free to keep right on defending a shady and duplicitous multi-billion dollar global corporation's unlawful practices and their right to screw over your fellow hosts if it makes you feel good and righteous about yourselves...
@Susan17 Do you really see hosts pointing out to other hosts what is stated in the TOS as condoning what is written there? I certainly don't. Their EC policies and application thereof are despicable and they should most definitely be forced to stop their "unfair, misleading, deceptive and illegal" practices. Being aware or made aware of Airbnb TOS and how they use it to abuse hosts, and pointing out that they've always operated like this, so no one should be surprised, is not at all the same thing as obeying without question.
"Do you really see hosts pointing out to other hosts what is stated in the TOS as condoning what is written there?"
Yes, Sarah, I absolutely do. Over and over again, on this thread and many others. Otherwise, why else would anyone possibly be supporting this travesty?
I have read every post and response on this thread and others. No where have i seen any representative of any standing from airbnb try to give an explanation or a statement in defense of the decision they made. So not only did they change policies without any advance warnings they now wont even have the common decency to show any interest in addressing hosts after the fact. Maybe they are thinking ignore it long enough and it will go away or maybe they are thinking there is plenty more fish in the sea, let the complainers go elsewhere. We will never know because they are not addressing the issues the hosts are having.
I'm bamboozled that business managers can bury their heads in the sand and ignore the concerns and worries of its business partners/employees/contractors/customers etc.
I do not think that it is for Airbnb to put pressure on the Hosts in how they should act in relation to charge or not to charge at all the guests for cancellations due to the Coronavirus. If when making the contract with Airbnb, it is left to the Hosts which modality they take in relation to cancellation, then it is just the same for them to decide in this special case. Airbnb in their interest to keep themselves at the top of the market wants to appear as so “considerate” by waving the 12% their charge to the guests for their administration fees. Well, that won’t make a big hole in the fortune of such a profitable company, but to the small host that lives from that income it hits them badly.
I , as host that do not live out of my self catering, has indeed not only refund 100% to the guests that has to cancel due to the Coronavirus, but also considering to close my two apartments for the rest of the year 2020. This because I have to consider that living in the North of Italy where more cases have been certified, I can not bring people here that one does not know if they will be still a health threat to us, to my rural community and to other potential guests themselves.
Besides, as a guest I cancelled on the 04.03.20 our so well planned and thought 11 nights to Istanbul, that we booked back in November 2019; and dear “good Airbnb” did not say : We will wave our fees, and indeed the host applied his policy that any cancellation before 14 days the date of arrival will be refund only 50%.
So, here you are my opinion as host and also as a guest affected In both cases by this horrible crisis.
I do not criticise any Host for the way they decide what to do in relation to their cancellation police in this unique case of the Coronavirus.
Only I want to wish that this nightmare goes away as quicker as possible and with no more casualties.
Best regards to you all and be brave and always with positive mind that we will survive this disaster.
Oh boy! Reading this thread has made me crazy! There are so many selfish people here! Before I get to my point, I want to say I have no idea where Sayulita, MX is but I want to visit you @Sarah977 ! i think we would get on fabulously!! For you hosts that think that Airbnb's declaration on 3/14 undermined your livelihood, please realize that an existing EC policy was already in place. It stated:
There’s no required documentation for these circumstances, but our specialized team will review each case to confirm that you’re directly affected.
Open Homes reservations that have been cancelled. More info about Open Homes.
Natural disasters, terrorist activity, and civil/political unrest that prevent the guest from traveling to or from the destination, or that make it unsafe to host guests.
Epidemic disease or illness that suddenly affects a region or an entire group of people. This doesn’t include existing diseases that are associated with an area—for example, malaria in Thailand or dengue fever in Hawaii. Any updates to our policy regarding the outbreak of a disease, and the scope of policy application, will be determined based on announcements by the World Health Organization and local authorities.
Travel restrictions imposed by a government, law enforcement agency, or military that restrict travel to or from the listing or experience location.
Safety and security threat advisories issued for the listing or experience location or the guest party’s departure location.
This COVID-19 special policy was likely implemented to streamline claims. It didn't change the rules of the game. There were already exclusions for natural disasters, epidemics, travel restrictions etc. You probably ignored them when signing up to host. They were there to protect guests because almost all travel insurance will only protect against a change of plans on the part of the traveler. Someone opting for "travel insurance" would not have covered a pandemic.
Refusing to reimburse guests during an international pandemic is unconscionable. I don't care if your sole income is derived from rentals. Most everyone else in the world has also lost their source of income! There is a place in hell for people that try and profit from these kinds of things (including Airbnb). Holding peoples money because you think you can, is despicable. If you do, I hope you are able to sleep at night because I certainly could not.
As a host, you have not provided a service (unless the guest was already there or within hours of arrival). You lost an opportunity to make money. That is not the same as losing hard earned cash that was sent in good faith for intended services to be rendered. Using the restaurant analogy, if you cancelled a dinner reservation two weeks before arriving at a restaurant, you would not expect to pay the same as if you ate half of your meal and needed to leave. You would recognize that as a lost opportunity cost for the restaurant but not a debt to them.
I had a trip to Ireland planned April 3-10. My hosts have refused to refund me my money. I am caught between Airbnb and the hosts to try and get my money back. Airbnb is not carte blanche refunding $. They are telling me to work with my hosts (Paul Quinn and Zen O) who have been extremely unreasonable. I find this offensive. Airbnb should be supporting their policies.
Y'all need to look at a bigger picture. We need to keep the world safe. To those hosts who want to keep my money, Karma is a bitch! To those who understand that we need to shelter in place until this is over for the betterment of all, thank you!!