unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Mornington, Australia
Level 2
94 Views

Hi Hosts

Here in Australia we have a great number of fly in guests.

We are now hearing suggestions of unvaccinated persons not being allowed to board planes here, (we are known as the nanny state)

If we have accepted bookings now for a future arrival and the guest finds later they are not able to fly, what would be the circumstances in relation to refunds?

Could it be considered Covid related?

I ask because I have been giving full refunds to all covid related cancelations over past 20 months, ouch!

I cant possibly survive another period like that.

Cheers John

6 Replies

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Sayulita, Mexico
Level 10

@John850  You need to read the current extenuating circumstances policy. You don't need to be refunding all these guests. Covid has now been around long enough that anyone who books should realize that their plans could be disrupted by sudden lockdowns, flight regs, etc.

 

So those type of travel disruptions, even though they may be Covid-related, are not covered by Airbnb's EC policy now and guests should purchase travel insurance (which you should strongly suggest to guests when they book), not expect hosts to be their de facto travel insurers.

 

Be grateful you live somewhere that is being pro-active about trying to protect its residents. I flew to Canada last month to see my daughter and granddaughter, and had to jump through all kinds of hoops, including a 3 day hotel quarantine and Covid test on arrival, finishing out the 14 day quarantine at my daughter's place. Although it was inconvenient, I was glad that Canada is  trying to do their best to prevent spreading the virus, and as a result, there is a much lower infection and death rate than in countries with leaders who don't seem to care.

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Mornington, Australia
Level 2

Thanks  Sarah

Yes totally agree re being a de facto travel insurer, great analogy! That is exactly what I have been but without the sheer wealth of an insurer.

However, nothing has really changed for me because I am now finding that all inquiries come with a question; "If borders close between states and I am unable to travel will I get a full refund?".

 If I say no they do not book.

You may not be aware that in OZ each state has own rules along with border control. when one state has a few cases the other states close borders and you cannot fly over them, and when I say a few cases I am talking 2 or 3. Also external borders are closed in and out.

So covid proactiveness is an absolute pain here, also financial support is no longer available.

It was very good for about 6 months government was handing out $1500 a month to myself and same for my wife. All stopped now.

Cheers John

 

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Sayulita, Mexico
Level 10

@John850  Yes, my brother lives in Oz, in NSW, so I am at least a bit aware of how things are going over there. And Canada is basically the same. While there are some federal rules, like not being able to enter the country without being vaxed or showing a negative PCR test (and going into 14 day quarantine if you aren't vaxxed), the individual provinces make their own decisions about lockdowns, vax requirements for certain jobs or activities, etc.

 

Or you can have it the other way, like here in Mexico, where there are almost no regulations, and Covid is raging and they have one of the highest Covid death rates in the world.

I prefer the extreme precaution route myself, even though it's inconvenient and often financially difficult. 

 

When guests send inquiries re getting refunds if they cancel, instead of just saying no, tell them that Airbnb's policy is now that at this point, travellers should be aware that Covid may cause travel disruptions (not like back in the early spring of 2020, when the pandemic caught the whole world by nasty surprise), so hosts' cancellation policies will be upheld, and that you would love to have them as guests, but that they should make sure to purchase travel insurance so they'll be covered in case the trip falls through. Maybe that would jog some of them to do that and go ahead and book.

 

Guests just don't seem to ever think about the fact that if they could just cancel whenever their travel plans fell through and get total refunds, hosts wouldn't have a viable business and there would be no such thing as Airbnb.

 

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Mornington, Australia
Level 2

I am not sure what travel insurance will cover where you are, all those I read seem to have this clause or similar which pretty much makes trying to cover my biggest problem, the border closure issue, hopeless.

No cover for:

  • the government bans travel before or during travel such as: “Do Not Travel” travel warnings; government directed border closures; or mandatory quarantine or self-isolation requirements related to cross area, border, region or territory travel.   Insurance companies will not take on this risk and I really dont blame them even though I wish they would.  Think we have to wear it until things get better, if and when. I am not alone on this one I know!Cheers John

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Sayulita, Mexico
Level 10

@John850  I'm no expert on travel insurance, but there is something called CFAR insurance that is more expensive, but I think covers anything. I know a lot of travel insurance has exclusions like you cited.

 

I've actually had my Airbnb closed to bookings since March 2020, as I home share and guests share my kitchen. At 71 years old, it's not something I'm willing to risk. Luckily, it was never a huge source of income for me, I have another job. But I do miss hosting- I got really great guests, and the extra income.

We'll all get through this somehow.

Re: unvaccinated guests and travel restrictions

in
Auckland, New Zealand
Level 10

Hello @John850 from one of my favourite places in Australia where you folk have had a rotten time and it's been awful to see what has happened through no fault of your own.

 

Do contact all your guests who you have had booked and cancelled bc of Nanny State ( do be mindful Dan is only reading what T Blakely etc have been telling him what to say) and let them know you are back open for them to come and stay.

It's one way of helping to get back ahead in these challenging times.

 

Let's hope that there's accountability sooner rather than later.

 

All the best from across the ocean in Auckland, New Zealand

 

 

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