Hello wonderful community!
I have Instant Book with 2 requirements: approved ID and Reviews with no negative ones.
So far, the 2 potential guests that had no reviews, and requested reservations, immediately cancelled after I confirmed them. Without saying why. Which is odd.
I am starting to wonder if I should just not accept anyone who has no reviews. What are your thoughts?
@Christine2987 completely undershow you feel.
A couple of ways you can proceed here:
- change to request to book ( more power over who books with you, just reply within 24 hours so your response rate is not affected)
-Should you stay with Instan Book, do not worry so much on guest cancellations ( my opinion, as long as the cancellation policy is not the one Intended, double check and review) and trust you gut. You can always cancel if you feel uncomfortable with the gues ( there's is a limit per year, confirm on terms and conditions)
Its good that you require an ID for your bookings. In additional to that, I recommend that you are extra cautious of bookings with ID's from your same Provence. The reason being is that people who inquire about long bookings > 1 month/3 weeks, who are from the same area are likely squatters. I say this from experience and hosting horror stories from friends.
@Christine2987 From the moment a Request comes in, you have 24 hours to correspond with the guest before making your decision about whether to accept them. You'll find that how the guest communicates and answers your questions is a much more accurate predictor of how they'll be as guests than reviews are. Things you might ask guests include what brings them to the area, what inspired them to choose your listing, and a confirmation that they're aware they're booking a room in a shared house. On that last point: new Airbnb users very frequently book without reading the listing carefully and don't understand that "Private Room" means they don't have the whole house to themselves. This is a common reason for abrupt cancellations.
I really can't recommend Instant Book to hosts with homestay listings, nor to new hosts still learning the ropes. Your first few hosting experiences and reviews are the most crucial to establishing your reputation, so in this stage you want to make sure each guest is a suitable fit. You can always switch back to IB at a later stage after you know how to spot and mitigate all the potential trouble spots.
Another thing: looking at your listing, I can see how easily a guest might miss the important detail that they're not getting a whole apartment. The condo is very nice but looks brand-new and built especially for guests and not particularly lived-in, and there's only one very fleeting reference to it being "shared." Guests who like staying in shared home with strangers were already a small niche group before Covid, but now just a tiny fraction of that sliver remains. Those that are still enthusiastic about your type of offering want to know something about who/how many people they're sharing the home with, and how much interaction they can expect. I'd recommend foregrounding this information and making your friendly hospitality a selling point, rather than hiding it deep in the description text.
I assumed the big bold title of "Private room in rental unit hosted by Christine," pretty much explained that my place is a private room in a rental unit. Exactly how many times does one need to emphasize this point?
Regardless, I have added 2 extra layers of "Your stay is a private room with common spaces," (1. in the 2nd sentence of description; 2. in the confirmation message), to avoid confusion.
I am a pretty friendly and relaxed person. Everyone has their opinion, but keep in mind all opinions are only relative and personal.
So, I am new to this, but I thought about requiring ID for instant book. Even when ID is required, it is not like I am going to verify it; rather, Airbnb will. Assuming it is a good thing to require the ID, what are the drawbacks (if any) for that?
Yeah, I believe they only ask people to upload their IDs. Not sure they do anything with the ID to verify it actually belongs to whoever uploaded it. Hard to tell.
@Sam4397 The benefit of requiring Verified ID is that it adds a layer of friction that might scare off some portion of the dodgy guests. But that's about it; as @Colleen253 said, Airbnb is not actually verifying anyone's identity or confirming that the ID matches the profile details, it's only saving a photo scan that you won't have access to.
You may require in your rules that guests present ID in order to check in, but you should never ever assume that Airbnb is doing anything to protect you.