Mandatory Grace Period - Host information should not be sent to guest until after 48 hours.

Status changed to: New

Given this new "Mandatory Grace Period" Airbnb should delay sending contact info out for 48 hours, and introduce a manual send button (see below).

 

This new directive is a gift for anyone looking to amass data.  And it's not as if Airbnb is immune to abusers and data scrapers.

This "Book, Get Info, Cancel"  exposes the host by releasing private information to possible bad actors.

 

I had already made a suggestion to prevent host information from being automatically sent out for an IB booking. I believe it was archived as a no-go.

The suggestion was to have a choice:

1.  Automatically send on confirmed booking.  

2. Click button to manually send, i.e. when I want to send it.

 

Unless Airbnb wants to employ hosts instead of the no responsibility, no risk "freelance" status, hosts should have some control over their listings and who gets their information.

 

Airbnb  cannot have their cake ,  and eat the hosts cake,  and share the hosts cake among guests.

Comments
Cormac in
Kraków, Poland
Level 10

 

@Ange

 

 

Unfortunately, Ange it would appear Airbnb can, with the rate Airbnb are signing up new hosts to take the place of those Host that realise that there been taken for a ride our voices are like farts in the wind momentarily unpleasant but soon fades away.

 

Twenty percent of hosts are doing extremely well and can write fables of how exceptional Airbnb product is, but as I stated before the rest of us are just cannon fodder...

 

Regards

Cormac

 

Level 10

@Cormac   Ah! Yes.  My words are pure rhetoric the only tool left in my box :)  

Rebecca181 in
Florence, OR
Level 10

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Louise in
New South Wales, Australia
Level 10

Hmmm, someone at Airbnb wasn't thinking when they dreamed this one up...

 

Firstly, I personally have no problem at all with this policy; I even volutarily signed up for it when it was offered.  Around 40% of my bookings are in the last 14 days anyway, so I'm not terribly concerned about being left with a free slot to fill 14 days out. 

 

Neither am I concerned about someone having access to my full name, address and phone number, in fact, that's great.  I imagine a plethora of bargain-seekers will now spot the opportunity, i.e. book, get my contact info, cancel without penalty and then contact me directly to book outside the platform.  I wouldn't be concerned about the insurance issues because the cost of insuring off platform through IAG's sharecover is about the same as the 3% fee I'd give up to Airbnb.  So Airbnb, did you think of this angle?  Methinks not.

 

Best of all, I no longer need to feel the slightest twinge of guilt about keeping my cut when a guest cancels.  My conscious will be salved because, hey, they had a full 48 hours to make a final decision, so not.my.problem. this time around.   So Airbnb, just watch the uptick in pissed off guests who now find that hosts are a hell of a lot meaner than before and CX finds that their cri de coeur to hosts to summon up some of that 'Airbnb spirit' and refund when we don't have to, simply bounces off our stoney hearts.

This stupid thing is that this could all be avoided if Airbnb simply did what every hotel and every airline does; offer different rates depending on the level of financial risk a guest is prepared to assume.  For example, assume my standard nightly rate under a Strict policy is $400.   A guest could book and assume the risk of the Strict policy and pay $400 a night.  The rate would increase as the level of risk decreased.  Say, 10% more per night for Moderate and 20% more per night for Flexible.  The guest explictly receives compensation for accepting a different level of financial risk.  This, plus the fact that they had a choice about the level of risk they were prepared to accept, would make them less likely to feel aggrieved and/or blame anyone other than themselves if they had to cancel and lost money.   Airlines know this, hotels know this, why doesn't Airbnb?

Rebecca181 in
Florence, OR
Level 10

@Louise - Thank you for highlighting unique and creative ways to view this Strict w/ Grace Period Cancellation Policy! I just now changed my cancellation policy to 'Strict with 48 Hour Grace Period' because of all of the benefits you have so succinctly pointed out. As we hosts all know, the 'Moderate' cancellation policy is actually 'Extraordinarily Lenient and Guest-Centric'; and, given that we do not have access to the 'Super Strict 30 / 60' cancellation policies that Property Managers on Airbnb have (even if we are the owner / hosts of premiere properties who view our rentals as a genuine for-profit business), this Strict with 48 Hour Grace Period may be the best that I can do for now. 

Raquel24 in
Gibsons, Canada
Level 10

Ange, I agree 100%, if the booking isnt certain, then our information, wifi password, lock codes etc, should not be shared until the booking is confirmed.  

Lila And Chris in
Athens, GA
Level 10

I think it would be fair for there to be some sort of allowance given to guests who want to cancel (even though the strict policy is a better fit for  my family's circumstances, I would have no reason to refuse a refund to someone who booked and then cancelled, with sufficient lead time). However, the new policy as it will go into effect does not fit my situation in any way shape or form:

 

-14 days is not nearly enough lead time for me to hustle the necessary arrangements for a booking that ends up being cancelled.

- 48 hours seems longer than any other prescribed window that in use within Airbnb (special offers are only 24 hrs, etc.). 

- And the lack of security of my personal/property info is also quite troubling while the booking is still provisional. 

 

I'm truly hoping some of these concerns can be heeded by Airbnb.

 

 

 

Sandra924 in
Maryland, United States
Level 3

Automation really helps in situations like these. Rather than uploading all that data to Airbnb, it's probably better to get creative with rules and autoresponders on the email side of things. 

 

Example: Since we can respond to messages from Airbnb without logging in and do so directly from the email message client, this is where an autoresponder could send information based upon certain met or unmet criteria.

 

For those who are less technical, work with a PM group and/or set of co-hosts who specialize in security and custom lifestyle design solutions so that implementing such changes wouldn't be intrusive. Either that or just do things manually until you feel comfortable enough, get enough ratings, make the earnings you want to justify the investment in stronger technology to thwart data scrapers looking to socially engineer you. 

 

If you want more specific suggestions, just ask. I hope this helps give you some clarity.

Online Community Manager in
London, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager

Hello @Sandra924@Raquel24@Rebecca181,

 

I just wanted to highlight to you that we have just posted an update about the New strict cancellation policy update in the Airbnb Updates board, here in the Community Center. I thought you might want to read this.

 

Thank you,

Lizzie

 

[Ange, Lila and Chris, Louise and Cormac–I've mentioned this to you elsewhere in the CC, so didn't want to bombard you with notifications! :) ]

Rebecca181 in
Florence, OR
Level 10

@Lizzie Thank you for the update. It is reassuring to know that our expressions here on the CC are not merely like leaves blowing aimlessly in the wind. Turns out I must have a 'Moderate' cancellation policy or I can not be in the 'Work' category. In my busy beach vacation area, this works out fine for me; bookings are abundant and last minute bookings are not hard to find and I rarely have cancellations. But I support those here who have expressed valid concerns / fears around this policy taking effect. Glad ABB is revisiting before formerly sanctioning. Appreciate all you do, Lizzie!

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