I'm in a tough situation. I have 9 guests checking in tomorrow and there's a power outage in my town due to the monsoon rains and storm. I have provided the following 2 options to the guest. Could you PLEASE tell me if I've handled this correctly or is there something I need to do differently? I would really appreciate your expert suggestions in time of this crisis. Here's the message I've sent:
As discussed over the call, due to the heavy rains in our town today, one of the electric poles fell and the electric supply in our neighbourhood is cut off. The rain hasn't stopped so we aren't sure when the power supply will resume.
We have an inverter for power backup but that will run out by tomorrow noon.
I have come up with 2 possible options for you to ensure that least amount of inconvenience is caused.
Option 1: I will get lots of candles for lighting up the house tomorrow evening and night along with some Diwali lamps that are at home. For the warm water for bathing, we have a gas connection to heat the water so the caretaker can keep heating water in the morning. I understand for 9 guests, this won't be a very convenient experience that I normally offer and hence I have an option 2.
Option 2: I can get in touch with Airbnb and check if they can relocate you to another similarly priced Airbnb that has power supply.
As per our telephonic conversation, you've mentioned that you'll checkin tomorrow by 1-2pm and then based on the situation would take a call.
I just want to add that at 2pm, option 2 might not be very feasible so it will be better if you go with the first option or make your decision in advance so that Airbnb has enough time to arrange another place if they agree to arrange one.
I'm very sorry about this last minute situation but like I explained it was in no ones control.
I hope inspite of the odds you and your family have a nice stay and make the most of the rains.
There are lots of board games, cards and a carrom board at our place too for you guys to enjoy.
Thanks! Let's fix this together.
hello @Jeet your option No 1 is perfectly fine - given your location, electricity happens to not work all the time, nothing surprising.
Your option No 2 doesn't make sense to me yet - what's your motivation for that one ?
I hope the guest chooses option 1 and things work out well.
I have provided option 2 and called out that this is based on the fact that Airbnb may or may not be able to make theee arranahements. Because for 9 guests, who might be seeking a more comfortable stay? Option 1 might not be the most convenient option.
At at the end of it I'm just trying to make sure that they have a good experience.
@Jeet, Hi, what a situation...
It's true that option 2 has little chance of being feasible...
If the guest doesn't get back to you in timely fashion, you would most probably be best served to also contact the helpdesk, if only to have it on record. You never know how the guest might react, so good to cover your bases...
Good luck working out this chaos!
That's a good one. I'll keep Airbnb informed and at the same time will also follow up with the guest for a timely response.
@Jeet This certainly should fall under extenuating circumstances acceptable cancellation policy. I would think it reasonable for you to determine that the listing does not safely meet the normal requirements and cancel. What the guest & ABB do after that would be up to them. It is exceedingly generous of you to offer the guest another option. Hopefully it goes well.
Hi Kelly, thanks for letting me know. I was under the impression that policy was for guest cancellations only and not for hosts but I read a little and looks like host cancellations can be covered too. I'll let my guest know about it again to check if they want me to cancel or if they wish to go ahead and enjoy a candle lit night.
Do have a look at Airbnb Help Centre. This is clearly a situation under which you as a host can cancel under extenuating circumstances.
In your situation, I would call Airbnb and ask them to cancel the booking and help the guests find somewhere else.
You will have to provide evidence of power being down in your area to avoid host cancellation penalties.
As a host you should be making a decision on this, not leaving it up to the guest. It is a safety issues. Even if the guest agrees to your ideas regarding light and hot water they can always complain afterwards and leave you with a bad review.
Oh Jeet, sorry for the crazy rain and power outage. Assuming you feel it is safe to host the guest with candles, I think you did exactly the right thing by offering them a special candle-lit night in a rainstorm, or the option to cancel. @Simply Traveling The World VIP wrote "why offer that", but we think it's gesture.
Good luck and please let us know how it turns out.
Yours, Marc and Linda
thank you SO much for your timely support and valuable advice. Reading through the extenuating circumstances Policy gave me more confidence in dealing with this situation and calling Airbnb in advance and keeping them informed helped.
Update te on the case: The guests, on arriving at 2pm decided to stay (Option 1). I was prepared with Candles, battery based torches and oil lamps. Luckily, by 7:30 pm the repair work was successful completed and the power supply was back. And all was well after that. The guests had a good time and had no complains. I have my fingers crossed for a good review but a few bad ones have never deterred me and if they chose to write a bad one, I already know what I'll be writing in the response to leave the potential guests impressed.
Once again, I want to thank each one of you for being so helpful.
Have a nice day! :)
I am glad things worked out @Jeet. I as going to mention that this would completely fall un extenuating circumstances but I am glad now that you did not go that route as it sounds you did a great job problem solving. Way to go!