Replace Extenuating Circumstances policy with Trip Insurance

Status changed to: Under Consideration

We all understand the kinds of life events that can prevent travel. Rather than upsetting guests over non-refundable trips, Airbnb has shifted 100% of the financial loss to hosts by way of the extenuating circumstances policy. Why do guests not have some skin in the game when an issue arises on their end?


This isn't a fair practice. We choose our cancellation policies based on our market, personal economics, and degree of risk aversion. The extenuating circumstances policy creates a loophole over which hosts have no control.


If Airbnb is unable to offer trip insurance, they should allow hosts to choose two cancellation policies: One that applies for regular cancellations (currently implemented), and one that applies to extenuating circumstances (eg. no refund, 50%, full refund).


Response from Airbnb

Thanks for your feedback. It’s helping us understand how the Extenuating Circumstances Policy is affecting hosts. We agree that this issue is important and we’ve been taking a close look at multiple options to address it. While we’re not able to offer trip insurance at this time, we’re hoping to explore it as a possibility in the future. In the meantime, we’re collecting as much feedback as possible.


Atlanta, GA
Level 3

Unfortunately, Airbnb only insists the owner take responsibility.


They like to say that this policy is fair because an owner can likewise claim extenuating circumstances :). When would any serious owner cancel unless it were absolutely necessary reason?


This policy is just bad. Last year I allowed Airbnb bookings during high season on a strict cancellation policy because it afforded some measure of protection. Now I am simply afraid to accept any during peak season due to this policy. Airbnb should consider that.


Eugene, OR
Level 10
Agree, since there's no thumbs up to tick on all the thread or individual posts. If ABB wants to have an extenuating circumstance cancellation policy, to keep guests happy and returning, that's on ABB and not on the host to pay for unless host agree to policy. So if the guest had a $1600 reservation and cancelled one day in and ABB wants to give money, they can choose to do so from their accounts not from mine. My cancellation policy is clear, 5 days b4. If the guest cancels and i can get it re-rented , I have offered or can offer a refund. Thanks, marcy
Bideford, United Kingdom
Level 3
Totally agree Allison
Fredericksburg, VA
Level 10

Or, you can do what some family owned hotels do in weather prone areas: hosts and guests "share the risk", meaning if extenuating circumstances come up, the guest receives a 50% refund. It requires both a host and a guest to make ABB work; both parties should share responsibilities and burdens. The host receives partial payment for their space and the guest receives a partial refund. 

Especially since AirBNB gets their cut no matter what...


Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: