Blocking dates

in
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
Level 10
328 Views

My proposition:

Dates should only be blocked by Airbnb when there is a confirmed reservation.

 

- A booking request should not block dates

- "verfication pending" should not block dates

- "Awaiting payment" should not block dates (at least not for 24 hours).

 

If you receive several inquires from potential guests just asking reasonable questions and then one booking request is coming in for similar dates, those other guests (pre-approved or not) get the message: dates or not available (anymore)

This is false information as long the booking request is not accepted !

 

Airbnb: stop acting as a control freak !

 

I am now receiving a lot of inquires/requests from international students, starting in the new semester. It is extremely difficult and annoying to manage this due to Airbnb's "blocking the dates"  policy. Some potential guests live in total different time-zone, communication takes much more time. And in the mean time the "let's book the place" lunatics (New profile, No ID verified, No reviews, Not reading the listing and Not having any questions at all) pop in, totally messing up things by blocking the dates.

 

BTW

Maybe give hosts an extra option: "only want to receive inquiries".

12 Replies

Re: Blocking dates

in
Gros Islet, Saint Lucia
Level 10

@Emiel1,

I can see why a booking request would block dates.  Especially for listings that don't have IB enabled.  The blocked dates gives the first requester priority to book, and disallows the host from choosing among different requests.  I also understand, and agree with many of your points.

 

When a guest is about to fill in a booking request, there should be a note that asks if the person is ready to make a booking or is just asking a question.  It should be made very clear to a prospective guest that if their booking request is accepted, the reservation is automatically confirmed.  

 

Unfortunately, it is industry standard to hold a booking for 24 hours when a payment is declined.  I am listed on a few other platforms, and they all do it.  When this happens, to get the attention of the sincere traveler, I send a message that states the situation needs to be fixed right away, because the room is available on other platforms.  I also unsync the calendars among the different platforms to unblock the dates during the 24 hour wait period for the bogus booking.  

 

The inquiries only suggestion would be nice for some hosts, but I doubt that Airbnb would implement that option, because it doesn't lead to an immediate sale and them getting a commission.  Plus, there would be hosts who abuse this option by steering the guest to book off platform since there would be any metrics gathered for declines.

Re: Blocking dates

in
Orono, ME
Level 10

@Emiel1 

I agree with @Debra300. These suggestions all sound great from the host's side but think about it from a guest perspective. Hosts would put guests in limbo until something better came along. While a large majority of the hosts on this forum are running their "hosting hobbies" like professionals, not every host operates this way. There needs to be some sort of intervention from Airbnb to keep it professional. That's what got them this far and what sets Airbnb apart from Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.  

 

Side note: @Debra300 Regarding, "When a guest is about to fill in a booking request, there should be a note that asks if the person is ready to make a booking or is just asking a question." I cannot think of anything more clear than "Enter your CC info." That to me means you could be charged. I can't think of any other online service that requires a credit card to ask a question. When I read a post about guests who request to book without the actual intent to reserve, it baffles me. 

Re: Blocking dates

in
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
Level 10

@Emilia42 

"intervention from Airbnb to keep it professional"

 

Last week i was flooded with booking request from new accounts without hardly any information or verification. While the inquirers all had profiles to be taken serious.  So maybe unverified new accounts should not be able to make booking requests at all. or at least not keep the requested dates locked up for 24 hours "awaiting verification".

Re: Blocking dates

in
Orono, ME
Level 10

@Emiel1 I'm a "you snooze, you lose" type of person. If the inquirers were serious, they would have booked to lock in their dates. You can always release your calendar within seconds with a decline. You will then have to hold out and hope the inquirers are in fact serious. As for the "Awaiting Verification" 24-hour hold, I agree that is a senseless Airbnb policy. Those who are verified, meet your booking requirements, and are committed to book, should get pirority. 

Re: Blocking dates

in
Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
Level 10

@Debra300 

Thank you for your insights.

 

A booking request maybe then should give a "temporary reserved" option to the dates as long not be confirmed. My main issue is it sends people inquiring/communicating about the listing (and in which i put already a lot of communication-energy in) a message : "not possible" as soon a booking request comes in and at least 1 requested date is in the inquirers time period.

 

 

Re: Blocking dates

in
Gros Islet, Saint Lucia
Level 10

@Emiel1,

The "not possible" auto-reply is doing what's intended, and blocking the dates prevents double bookings.  What I think you're implying with a "temporary reserved" option is offering interested searchers the opportunity to get on the "waitlist", and the booking is automatically confirmed if the host has accepted the request and the space becomes available during their requested dates.  That sounds pretty cool, and although it's a possible feature, I think that it's improbable that Airbnb will implement that type of functionality.  It's something that would be helpful to hosts, but doesn't increase booking commissions for them, because currently guests make reservations from among the listings that are showing as available during their search.  Including listings that have pending reservation requests would actually stall the speed of the booking transactions, because guests would wait to see if a preferred property becomes available, and if it doesn't may postpone or abandon the transaction altogether due to frustration and disappointment.

Re: Blocking dates

in
Austin, TX
Level 10

@Emiel1 I'll go you one better, how about adding a "host confirms this guest has met their booking parameters" in order to hold dates and confirm a booking?

 

I didn't at all mind using IB when ABB followed thru on my booking verifications and when a guest completed the steps of having a profile and answering my pre-booking questions. Bummer was, quite often they didn't

Re: Blocking dates

in
Keaau, HI
Level 6

I agree, I was surprised when this happened to me recently.  Something new that some idiot at Airbnb thought would be good thing.  We as hosts should have control over our calendars.  After all it is OUR listing! Not Happy!

Re: Blocking dates

in
Las Vegas, NV
Level 3

Could not agree more.

Re: Blocking dates

in
Zagreb, Croatia
Level 10

I agree these pending reservations are frustrating, especially when they are last minute.

Re: Blocking dates

in
Las Vegas, NV
Level 3

We have had 5 same day attempt at bookings in the last month.  Were not cancelled until the next day.  AirBnB claims that they are not liable for the lost revenue.  Going to check into other platforms this evening.

Re: Blocking dates

in
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level 2

sorry i am trying to start a new conversation but this site is driving me nuts because i can't see how to do it. when i just tried to block out a week at our house so that we can stay there i had to click each day at a time because it only allowed me to book one day. it used to give you a beginning date and an end one...what is going on? is it me?

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