Further to the feedback many of you gave on the Superhost criteria topic here in the Community Center and in research session, the Superhost team is currently evaluating the Superhost Cancellation criteria.
They’re considering evolving the Cancellation criteria from 0 cancellations in the past year, to:
They would like to hear directly from you on these potential changes:
I will share the feedback you submit on THIS topic specifically with the Superhost team. These are not the only things the team is currently looking into, but they wanted to run these ideas by you first.
Thank you so much and I look forward to hearing from you.
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Hello @Branka-and-Silvia0, @Sandra126, @Linda108, @Alice-and-Jeff0, @Robin4, @Jessica-and-Henry0, @Fred13, @Tim-and-Holly0, @Andrew0, @Huma0, @Lawrene0, @Rebecca181, @Clara116, @Patricia55, @Rachael26, @Michael956, @Susan17, @Christine1, @Helga0, @Cathie19, @Sarah977, @Emiel1, @Ben551, @Ann72, @Helen3, @Ange2, @Alexandra316, @Steve143, @Cor3
Just @ mentioning you here, as I thought this might be of interest to you!
It would be great if you could give the team a hand with shaping this by providing feedback on these options. I've included some points above which would be particularly useful to hear about. 🙂
Thanks so much,
@Lizzie Hi, Yvonna here(cohost). I agree with @Ben87 in that Thomas and I are not so experienced to have much of an opinion however Thomas and myself are also landlords to full time tenants in 4 other homes we own between us. Each of our tenants has a lease and an out if they should lose their job or get transferred. We consider it being nice landlords. Good reasons are just that good reasons. So far no cancels on our end but we did have one guest show up and apparently realize we lived here and the 3 other people he planned to sneak into his booking for one wouldn’t go un noticed. He lied and stated our place was too small at 1000 square ft and that we had pets not listed. How about instituting a “super guest” status for guests that achieve certain criteria. Right now that would mean more to me than a useless super host status. I already know I am a super host. I want the ability to know if someone is a super guest! That’s all I got!
I have long been frustrated with the superhost criteria. Unlike many in this conversation I have many houses listed with Air BNB, but their criteria are on-size-fits-all ie the same rules no matter how many listings you have. I like the options that Lizzie has given above, but do think it needs to be like option 1 - either 100 stays OR a year, or some such mixed basis - maybe 50 stays or 6 months is fairer? Things do happen in houses & occassionally bookings do have to be cancelled.
As a manager of more than 40 listings to be allowed ONE cancellation over these properties is very unfair!
Thank you for looking into this!
Hi - Quinovic Viaduct is a Property Management company with over 170 Plus apartments on Airbnb and we are working over 30 distribution channels which Airbnb is just one.
When we have an instant sell on most of these challenges it is hard to always honour every booking request and it seems there is sometimes a lag between updates between our booking system and Airbnb.
Also - we are into stock control and when we offering an alternative to a guest this sometimes is not accepted even when we are upgrading a guest.
We are in the business of maximising the return to our owners and it can be difficult dealing with Airbnb guests at times as they don't seem to understand or to be fair know when they are dealing with an owner of multiple properties or not.
So when we explain that apartment A is now to be Apartment B both are in the same building but they are going to be moved - it has caused problems
Also, we do Corporate Housing, therefore - we have long term Corporate guests whom as the last minute will extend their bookings due to changes in a contract - this has meant we need to move or cancel a guest booking - but with Airbnb this is costly
@David3732 I must say, I have little to no sympathy. The bottom line is someone's well planned vacation has been compromised through no fault of their own. It is up to you to keep your calendars up-to-date, to tell your corporate clients that extending isn't possible offering them an alternative and honor reservations that have been made and paid for.
You have, in fact, outlined why I will never book with anyone who is managing 170 plus apartments.
@David3732 I also have little sympathy. When a guest books a place, it's not okay to just move them to a different unit than the one they booked. That's called bait and switch and if I were a guest you did that to, I'd be plenty steamed.
This is exactly why traditional home hosts don't want property managers with hundreds of listings mixed in with hosts who actually care about how they deal with guests and do everything they can to not inconvenience guests. Bait and switch and cancelling booked guests downgrades the whole platform.
I think the penalty should be based not just on frequency but how long before the stay a reservation is canceled. I think there is a difference between a host canceling a day in advance(non-emergency) and someone canceling 2 weeks in advance. Guests should also be held responsible for unfair cancelations. One time a guest knew they wouldn't receive a refund(i'm assuming), so they requested a change of date for their stay, and then canceled. It's ridiculous that this guest could get a refund this way after the host has been generous enough to modify the reservation.
On a different note, maybe the homes themselves should have a Superstay status, that way a host doesn't solely have to rely on superhost status in showing their great effort. This would also help large property management companies. Although to be honest, I don't like these type of hosts because it's totally contrary to want Airbnb is meant to be. That's why it's so easy for these type of host to move guests around and not see is as a HUGE negative.
@Juan63 The time span from when a listing is booked and cancelled until the check-in date should definitely have some bearing on the severity of cancellation penalties. I've seen cancellation notices on hosts' accounts that said "Host cancelled this reservation 171 days before check-in". That's a whole lot different scenario for the guest than a host cancelling a day or two before. Of course a cancellation is always inconvenient, as the person then has to spend time looking for another place, but it's not like all their plans were thrown into turmoil. 2 weeks before could be problematic if it was over Xmas or New Years or Easter break, when the guest might have close to no chance of finding anything comparable at a price they could afford.
@Lizzie Neither option is fair. Neither option addresses those hosts who don't get the volume of business of 100 trips in a year.
Option 1 leaves things exactly as they presently are for hosts like me.
Option 2 means it would take me about 5 years to get to the point where I could make a cancellation without it affecting my Superhost status.
These options favor the Superhosts who do a larger volume of business. What should be important to Airbnb is that hosts are getting 5* reviews, provide a high level of product and service, and have guests who are pleased with their accommodations, which build confidence in Airbnb, not the number of stays we host per year.
Presently 10 stays per year is qualification for Superhost status. This should be the basis of the cancellation policy.
If a Superhost who doesn't make a habit of cancelling reservations, finds they need to for some reason, you can believe that reason is valid. We're in the hosting business, not the cancellation business. High-volume Superhosts shouldn't be given preferential treatment over hosts who get fewer bookings.
If Airbnb wishes to come up with a way to reward hosts who do a high volume of business, which of course benefits Airbnb through guest fees, they should find some other way to do that, not by punishing lower volume hosts by essentially leaving them out of cancellation policy fixes.
Thanks for your feedback here. It's great to hear your thought process here.
Personally, I don't think the idea here is to give preferencial treatment to 'high-volume' hosts and if I remember correctly, looking at the options mentioned in the November topic (where we asked about a range of different items on the criteria), the original thought was to have it as 25 rather than 100 and I believe some hosts felt this was a little too frequent.
Based on this, do you think that the 100 trips needs to be reduced to somewhere in the middle or do you generally feel that the criteria shouldn't change?
I'm going to chime in here and say that I have only cancelled one time in my 1 1/2 years of hosting. I have 90 five star reviews and 1 four star review.....Yet I still don't have that my Superhost status back and that's kind of ridiculous. Neither 1 year or 100 trips are good options. How about cut those in half and also look at reviews left by guests.
@Lizzie Thanks for your response. The idea may not have been to give preferential treatment to high-volume hosts, but that is, in fact, how it would function. Theory vs reality.
It would create a sub-class of Superhosts who don't get the same benefits as others, which is called discrimination.
Personally I've never cancelled a reservation at all. As others have said, there is the extenuating circumstances policy which covers cancellations made for quite valid reasons, at least what Airbnb considers valid reasons.
25, 50, 100, any actual number still favors higher-volume hosts. A % would be more fair, as @Huma first suggested.
I have no bone to pick with higher volume hosts being given some special perks, after all, they are more valuable to Airbnb in terms of the $ they generate. But those perks should be separate from any policy that affects all hosts, or in this case, Superhosts. And value can't always be measured in $- hosts who receive consistent 5* reviews, glowing written reviews, and have happy guests, lead to a better perception of the platform, which ultimately results in higher profits all around. Whether that host has hosted 25 guests or 800, they still add equal value in that regard. The guests of the host who's only had 25 guests so far may be the kind of guests who have tons of friends who travel a lot and will tell them all what a great Airbnb experience she had, leading to them all signing up and booking.
What would address the zero cancellation issue more effectively IMO is to make changes to the circumstances under which hosts could cancel penalty-free. For instance, cancelling a reservation that is still 9 months out from check-in date could be allowed- it may be a small inconvenience to the guest, but isn't anything like cancelling someone due to check in next week. Perhaps the host could be required to give the guest $20 or something to pay for the time it takes them to book another place.
And cancelling a reservation where the host has received disturbing messages from the guest that makes them uncomfortable, or the guest simply doesn't respond to messages at all, even after prompting by Airbnb.
It would help if there was a dedicated and well-trained CS team that only dealt with cancellations, rather than hosts just getting the luck of the draw- some CS reps being knowledgable, helpful and understanding, some seemingly not understanding the issue at all and closing the conversation before there is any resolution apart from "Because we said so".
Really, @Lizzie, I think the cancellation issue isn't a biggie- hosts would prefer to see the outlier review removal addressed, which was promised many months ago and on which there has been not a peep from Airbnb. It affects far more hosts than cancellation issues and has led many a great Superhost to lose their status because of one untrue, vengeful, review which Airbnb categorizes as a reflection of the "guest's experience" even if the host has 100 awesomely great reviews.