Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Edmonton, Canada
Level 10
38,527 Views

Please take this poll:  http://goo.gl/forms/7otIJChX7d

 

I have seen a common issue posted on the Community Center which happens with several hosts on Airbnb and that is with the number of guests people book for and the number of guests who show up at the door.  This is often a result of 1) a guest trying to "sneak" in extra guests because the host charges extra per person over "X" amount or 2) some guests feel that children should or are not considered people/guests.

 

Airbnb states that, ""You need to disclose the total number of guests accurately when making reservation requests, including infants and children (Travelling with children)." Now most people would not even know where to find this and it is not on the booking page when you choose the number of guests.  

 

Airbnb needs to change the way guests book when it comes to inputing the number of guests.  By guests showing up at a host's listing with more people than the host is expecting puts the guest and the host in a difficult position.  It is essentially starting the Airbnb experience out as a negative experience.  Any number of things could happen including 1) the host turning the guest away or only allowing the number of guests in that were booked or 2) putting the burden onto the host by now having to charge for extra guests.  This is not good for the Airbnb brand and you can bet the host will not be getting a favourable review even though the situation was not their fault.

 

I would like to see Airbnb add a box for the number of children that will be staying just like the airlines and hotels have on their sites.  This would also help out for those hosts who have not checked off "Family Friendly" as the search would not even show their listing if the children box is filled out.

 

What are your thoughts and experiences of extra guests showing up at your doorstep?  Should this be something that Airbnb should implement or leave it as it is?  

 

Please share your thoughts below AND complete this quick 2 question survey: http://goo.gl/forms/7otIJChX7d (Results of the poll are here: https://goo.gl/9lTWbD)

 

Here are a couple of examples of what Airbnb could include:

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children2.png 

 

156 Replies

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

Online Community Manager in
London, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager

Hello @Dave-and-Deb0,

 

As mentioned in my other post to you, it is fantastic to see this post. Thanks so much for this. Also, it is exciting to see the first poll on the new CC - I know I am going to be glued to this! 🙂

 

 

 

 

Please do add your thoughts to this thread, it would be great to hear your opinions on this well. 

 

Happy posting 🙂

 


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I'm currently on maternity leave. I look forward to catching up when I return. In the meantime, please contact another member of the Community Manager team: Personal Update


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Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Ormstown, Canada
Level 10

Yes, I have had people tell me that their kids should stay free of charge because they can in hotel rooms. I remind them that my house rules clearly state that children are "extra people" and need to pay the additional guest charge, each. The only ones that I allow free of charge are babies that cannot walk yet, and that will sleep with the parents or in a cot/stroller that they bring with them.

 

Adding a "box" for children still doesn't solve my biggest problem, and that is dishonest guests that sneak in extra guests. When I have 9 hours of cleaning and 11 loads of laundry for just 4 guests then I know there were more people than were booked. We now go and check the house periodically to see how many vehicles are parked outside. I once even caught someone in a camping trailer and the swore that they never entered the house!

 

Airbnb needs to give us some ammunition to combat these dishonest guests. For example, I'd like to be able to tell them that, if caught, their reservation will be terminated immediately with no refund. Airbnb needs to add that to their terms so that I am within my rights asking them to leave.

 

Perhaps another way to discourage extra people is to ask, not only the number of adults and children are being booked, but also how many beds will be used. I have had a family of four use all five beds. Unfair, because usually a couple will share one bed and their kids one each. It's discouraging when I walk into the house and find all beds used - and then of course I will suspect that the family was larger than what was claimed when the booking was made.

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Oak Park, IL
Level 4

The assumption that kids are free always irks me as well.  If anything, kids are MORE work, more noise, more wear and tear, and leave behind bigger messes.  I always quote Dr. Seuss if I get push-back: "a person's a person no matter how small."  But it still bugs me to even have to bring it up, like I'm nickel-and-diming guests.  It just starts things off on a sour note.  

 

I absolutely would be for an "adults/children" drop down rather than the "guests" one we have currently. That way you would be forcing guests to acknowledge and answer the question, rather than wrongly "assuming."

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
New South Wales, Australia
Level 10

The problems created by guests and their 'child is a non-human' attitude is the bane of my hosting existence.  I waste so much time dealing with this type of enquiry and with guests who don't read my listing, book and leave their children off the booking.  I've got one such matter in play right this minute.  Having got nowhere with this guest I've now 'reached out' to CX.

 

Guests just don't understand that the fact that their child sleeps in the bed with them is irrelevant.  These spawn of satan are the single most expensive class of guest to host.  I'd charge double for them if I could!

 

I've done EVERY POSSIBLE THING to drive the point home that children do not stay free at my listing.  I state that if it is human, has a pulse and is not attached to a placenta, it's added to the guest numbers and paid for.  I have this in my listing description, it's the first paragraph of my House Rules and I have it in both English and Simplified Chinese (I have a lot of PRC guests).   Does it work?   NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Airbnb needs to have two new fields added to the booking form - number of beds and a breakdown of guests by age.  There is simply nothing else that will work, nothing.   It also needs to include a message about the need to accurately include all guests before hitting that 'Book' button.

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Brazil
Level 4

@Louis44e

I agree with you completely, but in my profile and description of my house, I say it is very dangerous to bring children because my cabin is mezzanine, and there are large windows with huge glasses and somehow, they give up on bringing their children, and other guests will book. But I also found that some children are better behaved than young adults who are 30 and do not even take the garbage out. It depends in how you word your description, in my case is easy because my cabin is really not fit for small children.

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Zagreb, Croatia
Level 10

@Louise0 

"...... I'd charge double for them if I could!...." hehe yes, it crossed my mind too 🙂 but then I realized that it would often still be to low

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Saint Johns, MI
Level 1

**[Inappropriate content hidden - Community Center Guidelines]

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
London, United Kingdom
Level 10
On kids there is a huge difference with hotels. There the rooms are normally more sterile and children can't cause very much more damage than adults. In our homes they definitely can. I think that 4 year olds are about the most expensive type of guest in their impact on our work. Some competitors like Onefinestay have a "no toddlers" rule.

I regularly get the sneaking in of extras. At New Year I had two couples book and found 8 people there when I made a brief return to check all was well before going away myself. I've had parents book for themselves and mentally classify the baby on the doorstep as luggage. I can't possibly tell them to go away at that point and it is very uncomfortable to begin a stay with a request to amend the booking.

So I hope Airbnb will react and change something here.

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Oklahoma City, OK
Level 2

Hi everyone,

I am going to vent on this one. I think we should be able to make a claim on the security deposit. Maybe change name to Security and Overage account.

I just had someone book and needle me on price.I was told about a  5 year old coming  for an appointment to our highly regarded eye center. I don't charge for first 2. She asked for a better rate for 3 nights and I said no.Then she changed to 5  night. She got her weekly rate for 5 days, (I DON'T AGREE WITH 5 DAYS getting a 7 DAYS week rate) Then after she booked she said there was a 2 month old and a 10 year old coming.

She rented a lovely large loft with a king size bed and now she says I need to get her a pak and play and a blow up bed for the 10 year old. She claimed  2 guest. I had a expensive blow up bed for extra paying guests, but a guest that did not claim the extra people got the bed out from the back of the closet and punctured it. I didn't know it had been used till the next time I needed it of the damage ( which we patched but that is short fix.)

 I am not amused with her after booking requests especially since my listing House Rules state: 

>>Families with children. We Do Not have the necessities considered necessary for young children. 

Michale

 Michale

 

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Bellingham, WA
Level 10

@Michale0 I'm confused about your issues with the weekly rate.  Did the guest receive a discounted per night rate for 5 nights, resulting in a payout of less than the weekly rate?  Or did they pay the weekly rate, but only want to stay 5 nights?  We had issues when we were newer hosts with the weekly and monthly rates, and not being able to collect additional money for guests above a certain number- with the weekly or monthly rate it didn't matter if there were 2 guests or 10.  I don't know if that is still the case but it used to be. 

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Oklahoma City, OK
Level 2

Kelly,

 My guest booked  5 nights and was charged the discounted weekly price per day.

Michale

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Bellingham, WA
Level 10

@Michale0 I would have an issue with that as well.  Is this standard policy?  I think I would be inclined to uncheck the weely rate box.  I agree:  5 nights is not a week. 

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Seattle, WA
Level 2

I've read a few of your replies to the "children are not people we should pay for" comments, and I couldn't agree more.  I also would like Airbnb to be responsive around this.  I love changing the security deposit to something that can be used to pay for the extra charges they should be paying upfront.  

 

I missed the part about the child coming along and now guess I am going to suck it up.  Happily they are only here for 3 nights.  

Re: Number of Guests Booking: Suggestion for Airbnb

in
Arkport, NY
Level 10

I love that.. the 4 years old are the most expensive guest or up to par with drunken college kids. 

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