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
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!!
@Barbara2157 Sayulita is about 45 min. north of Puerto Vallarta and you'd be most welcome (after the COVID all-clear, of course).
Although I feel that guests should be refunded 100% due to the pandemic, I'm trying not to judge other hosts on that. I'm not privy to the financial situation of other hosts nor to the actual reason that their guests are trying to cancel with 100% refund. For instance, guests whose booking dates aren't until November and are just trying to take advantage of the policy don't get my sympathy, nor guests who are already staying in an Airbnb (and should stay put) who decide to leave early and get a refund (unless they are from another country and their govt. is telling them to get home now if they want to be allowed back in).
I have a lot more understanding for a host who's a single parent renting out rooms in their home, with no or little other income, retaining a portion of the guest's payment than I do for hosts who own 5 homes they list on Airbnb and are raging mad because they won't be able to pay the mortgages on all of them, but that's just my personal bias. It's one thing to try to urge others to do what we think is the right thing, and explain why, but dictating that they should, otherwise they're just selfish and greedy, isn't productive. No one is likely to change their stance on anything if they feel they're being personally attacked. People all need to try to be kind to each other as we move through this.
@Barbara2157 Well put together response but many short comings.
No one ever planned, including the CEO, of a pandemic of this magnitude. This extenuating circumstance was not created for such a large scale event. It should have been treated as such , a "once in the lifetime" event. This is all from Brian, the CEO's mouth. Nowhere in the policy does it mention what reimbursement looks like. In the beginning not all areas in the world were affected nor at the magnitude it is now. A blanket statement was not smart. It was based on fear. Not to mention requests for cancellations in June, August or even later should not be included at this point.
"As a host, you have not provided a service (unless the guest was already there or within hours of arrival)" Wrong. When you book a home, your hosts agrees to block the days for you. This prevents anyone else from booking. They prepare their schedules, buy supplies, schedule the cleaners, etc.
The bigger picture? Maybe losing their house and their livelihood is the bigger picture, just like it is for guests. So to assume hosts are greedy and guests are not, shows the fact you only care about your money and not the host.
Really there was a better more fair way of doing this, 100% credits for example. But you know what the biggest problem was? As hosts, we were not part of the solution! We were left to carry all the burden. A guess what, at least in my case, as things developed. I chose to give a full refund or something resembling it, let guests know when their dates were now included in the policy and still had happy guests. I took my time, kept my guests informed. For you to think hosts are horrible people, is a little gross, when in my opinion, it may just be about the money for you too.
Some hosts are unwilling to accept the guests requests of cancellation. Which means that the hosts calendars are occupied. If this properties of the hosts are so attractive for guests to rent, then it should be no issue at all by any logic for the hosts to agree to the cancellations since new guests would book instead immediately. 😉
@Juan63 I never said that all hosts were horrible. I have rented dozens of Airbnb's over the years and have always had favorable opinions of the hosts and properties. What I am saying is that under these circumstances, hosts or guests who would expect to maintain the booking are looking at this selfishly. It is best for everyone to stay home right now.
I am truly disappointed that I am confined to my home instead of packing for my trip. But, I know that is in the best interest of everyone. If a host would expect me to travel under these circumstances, they are simply selfish.
If I bought an expensive concert ticket and the venue burnt down thus cancelling the show, I would want a refund. That doesn't mean that the performer did not practice to get ready. It just means the show didn't happen, therefore I did not derive the benefit expected. A fire would have cost the performer the opportunity to make money, but I should not have to bear the burden of that. That doesn't make me selfish.
The problem with trying to offer vouchers for future travel is that it would probably be impossible to coordinate schedules of all properties. For my upcoming trip, I had 4 Airbnb's booked. Each location aligned with my itinerary. Two hosts gave full credits. Two did not. If I got travel vouchers to try and reschedule my trip it would only work if each property were available on the dates that worked for me.
I agree it was unfair for Airbnb to make a blanket decision for all hosts. However, it would have been impossible to get agreement from thousands of hosts, all while this fluid situation was developing. Look at my 4 hosts. Two agree that a refund is warranted. Two do not. I don't think Airbnb could have gotten agreement from all to do the right thing during this pandemic. Some people just don't see the larger picture.