Airbnb is now taking names off the iCal reservations we see. My cleaner and I share the iCal and use their names to identify which guests are checking in an out. Removing them now makes this system we have used for years unworkable! We'll need to manually enter every guests name now.
Airbnb have removed the questions we require guests to answer and previously removed their photo and last name. Essentially they are turning us into mini hotels that have no control over who stays. I don't want people letting themselves into my garden anymore as it's now to harder to identify them. For this reason we closed the granny flat airbnb we had running for 5 years in our garden. We still run one Airbnb but I am considering closing that also.
This is an issue of Trust. Airbnb no longer trusts hosts to do the right thing and yet their business model relies on us. Locally, in my area the state government is taking submissions on short term lettings and Airbnb has asked me to write a submission in their favour. Personally I find this hard to do now. Previously I had written to my local MP saying how great Airbnb was for the local shops and hospitality industry, but now I am not sure I agree with the direction this company is heading. Besides... they avoid paying income tax in my country. I can take a step back from my personal gain and see this company is acting poorly in the community.
If they don't trust me why should I trust them?
This change by Airbnb will significantly impact our guest hosting workflow. Today the iCal export is utilized by our lock software to automatically create lock code and send that code to the guest via SMS. By removing the phone number and name we are not able to automate this process.
Disappointing change from Airbnb as it results in yet another cost of hosting.
By not allowing questioning of prospective tenants, we run the risk of bringing problematic guests to the condo which is very unfair to my neighbors. In a condo or private community, as opposed to a free standing home, there are common areas or shared space. I have to consider my neighbors when renting. I am not in favor of instant book or any booking w/o prior communication with guests. Ditto for the lock box. Hosts should meet their guests or pay someone to meet them. Strangers should not be allowed to wander a condo building searching for an apt and a lockbox. Not ok by me! I am a very considerate neighbor and Airbnb should discourage rather than encourage this.
I usually agree with the host gripes on this forum...but not this one.
Airbnb was right to close this security loophole so guests' personal information is protected.
I've seen PLENTY of hosts who publish their calendar (with all details) on their direct booking site - open to the public/world. With a reservation confirmation number, guest name, and phone number, this is a big security risk. If that host also uses the "last 4-digits of phone" door code that so many of us do, that means anyone who knows about the insecure calendar knows how to enter the rental ANY TIME.
This was a failure on Airbnb's part to ever allow sensitive customer data to leave their site/control. Yes, it causes some bumps while we all figure new processes to share info with cleaners, etc, but it was a necessary and overdue fix.
IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE NEW iCAL, USE THE "TEAMS" FEATURE.
IF YOUR LOCK USES iCAL, talk to the manufacturer. You're not the only host with this problem, so they'll find a work around. Developers have until December to figure out a fix. It's not rocket science.