I am just curious as to the different ways hosts collect pet fees. After realizing it's easier to get a guest to accept a refund (via change reservation) than it is to request extra money, I build my pet fee into the cleaning fee and simply change the reservation to $25 less if a guest is not bringing a pet.
This has worked quite well, but I've always wondered if:
1) I miss out on some bookings from guests without pets, because my price will seem high in a specific date search. (although I had 100% occupancy in June and 91% for July)
2) If this method screws up my stats, because in order to change the reservation, I can only adjust the "per night" price and a $40 night suddenly goes down to $15 per night for a one-night booking.
I'd love to see other ways hosts handle this just to compare. (I've searched the forum as well) This would be sooooo much easier if ABB would just add a freakin' pet fee button already!
And for the record, I love hosting guests with dogs!
@Suzanne302 Wouldn't it be easier to put in your House Rules a Pet Fee of $xx will be charge after booking if you are bring a Pet. Then you send a Request for Money to people who are bringing pets. They accept and your prices are not elevated.
@Letti0 As I mentioned, the only reason I don't do that is because when I've asked for the pet fee, guests have to be reminded several times and usually wait until the last minute and several reminders before sending additional money.
Every single time I've sent a change to reduce the price, the guest responds within minutes to accept!
I suppose I could change the way I do it and put in my rules that pet fee must be paid within 24 hours of booking or something, but then I run the nightmare of having to enforce that...
So often they don't even disclose that they are bringing a pet. The neighbors tell me later, or I am greeted with fur balls when cleaning. Why cant AB&B just charge the fee upfront? I've never received a satisfactory answer!
I think the problem is that some guests that don't "accept" the request for money. When guests get a notice to accept money from a host I'm sure they will click accept at lightning speed whereas, when the guest needs to shell out more money on top of their initial payment, even if it is for a service they specifically asked for and said they would pay for, they will take their time agreeing to the payment.
Guests are totally aware that no host is going to kick the guests out or refuse entry to guests who paid $300 for a 2 night reservation, just because they didn't pay a $30~40 pet fee.
Even if the pet fee collected initially which will be refunded brings your rates up higher, if being pet friendly gives you a competitive advantage in your area. I'd be interested to know how this difference would affect bookings.
I've been using your suggested approach. Today I sent the same, "please confirm the pet fee" message. The guest replied that they agreed. Now the resolution center is refusing to let me send the request for the pet fee until their reservation is paid in full.
So do you (or I) have any clue when the reservation has been paid? Or is AirBnB policy now imply that I must beg for money as our guests arrive? AirBnB's refusal to put a list of guest option fees (e.g. "Adult, Child, Dog, groceries, etc.") is shameful at this point.
@Scott44 They send the guest a reminder to pay 3 days before it's due which 14-7 days before the stay it depends on the booking. I have a setup to remind me to bill things. I'm old school. I have an At A Glance daily/per year calendar. I just make a note on the 13th day before the stay to bill if it doesn't go through then I note to bill on 6th day. Keeps it simple and I don't accidently forget.
Thank you for this conversation!
I have been an AirBnb host for 2 months and I have already had 3 guests with pets, all dogs. BTW, we LOVE dogs.
We had our first problem last night, which I will post about separately.
This has led me to consider adding a fee or deposit.
I'm too new to AirBnb to comment, but I am very interested in what the veteran hosts have to say.
@Heidi248 Do not add a deposit add an actual pet fee. Use this for the extra clean up and make it enough to set some aside for bad cases. I like the idea of a seperate fund category for cleaning for pets. If I booked with my dog you would not have the same clean up as a different dog, say a golden. My dog gets haircuts and hardly sheds anything it's an Airdale. She's also completely trained and will not go on furniture, use your house as a bathroom or other such things. So on me you save put the money saved on my pet cleaning fee in a seperate fund to cover the ones that are a mess to deal with.
@Letti0, thank you for this! I'm still figuring out how best to add the pet fee. I know you have commented on this in another part of the forum, so I'll look for those comments to help me. Sure wish AirBnb would add a pet fee option!
@Heidi248 Also put it in the things the guest must acknowledge at booking check outm so they can't say they never saw it. Go to Listing, Booking Settings, Scroll down to Rules and Edit Details a Guest Must Know About Your Home Click on Amenity limitations and add the pet fee there too.
What has annoyed me is that a Host, who KNEW 12 months in advance that we were bringing our SMALL dog, arbitrarily presented us with a demand ON ARRIVAL for an extra €30 PER DAY.
Had she informed me of this exorbitant fee at the point of booking I would have looked elsewhere. ( I guess she could on this basis have demanded any amount. It says in listing that there is a charge ( not detailed) for dogs dependant on size. She KNEW I was bringing a SMALL dog, made no specific mention of a fee).
Host provided precisely NOTHING by way of facilities for my dog, and insisted that he was tied up when outside ( we complied)
I refused to pay and now host has raised a complaint via Airbnb.
There was no deposit so I don’t see how Airbnb can take this money off me. They asked if I was prepared to pay half. I’m not. I’m not prepared to pay anything extra.
Incidentally my dog caused NO damage and NO soiling whatsoever.
Im really cheesed off, and just see the hosts as greedy. There was of course a cleaning charge which we were aware of from the start. No problem whatsoever with that.
And if my dog had caused a problem I would of course have paid for it. He didn’t.
Am I being unreasonable?
By the way I have not challenged the host on many indiscrepancies between her listing and reality, as I consider myself an easy going person.
AirBnB happyily and accurately collects for the third and fourth person at my listing. Whether it’s a three-year-old daughter or extra grown-up. I would much rather have a three-year-old child than a Bernese, St Berdoodle or 3 priceless hunters on my carpets. Why in the world can’t AirBnB add one simple click for pets please?