Unfair cancellation despite host trying to help to guest!

Level 2
England, United Kingdom

Unfair cancellation despite host trying to help to guest!

Hi everyone 

I would really appreciate some advice from this group as I feel like I’ve been treated in an extremely unfair way by a guest and Airbnb. I’d appreciate the community’s view on what I could potentially do. 

I received a last minute phone call on the day of checkin from the guest saying they were unwell and asked if it would be possible to move move the dates.


I felt sorry for the lady so agreed to allow her to move the dates to another set of dates. 

Upsettingly, because the new booking was two weeks away, she was now able to cancel free of charge. She proceeded to cancel the booking, leaving me with £1,000 worse off despite trying to help her as much as I could.


Have I got any options here from a policy / legal perspective? Or do I just need to put this down to a tough life lesson.


Thanks for the help! 




6 Replies 6
Level 10
Bristol, United Kingdom

You should never agree to move dates for a last minute booking by doing so you allowed the guest to cancel penalty free @Sam6685 


Sadly a tough life lesson. 

Level 2
England, United Kingdom


Level 10
England, United Kingdom

@Sam6685 This is interesting because over Covid Airbnb actually managed to maintain a record, and set cancellation policies, based on the original dates not changed dates. Did you send the guest a change request or did you approve one they sent you? I can see the policy may be different in the different cases.

Hi there - thanks for the response. 


Very interesting. I saw this point mentioned on another thread, so thanks for raising again. 


The guest sent us the change request. 


This request was actually asked after check-in. I wasn't able to approve it myself because the request was made post check-in. I had to spent a fair bit of time with Air BnB support to approve the request. 


We tried very hard to help the guest as much as we possibly could. 


Do you think we will be able to get our money back?


I don't suppose you could direct me to the relevant policy could you?


Thanks for your help! 



@Sam6685 I suspect Airbnb actually cancelled your original booking and made a new one for the guest thus causing the issue you faced. I can't find anything in the terms that actually explain what should happen - lets hope others have more success.

Level 10
Cannes, France

Hello @Sam6685 


Yes you have most surely been shamefully mistreated by this guest who has used a well known method of getting her money back by pushing her new dates that fall outside of your cancellation period which I am guessing is moderate?


You were trying to do well by her and this is how you are rewarded😢 Terribly unfair.  I've had a good look on several Airbnb links and found this one that says that guests are entitled to change their reservation even after check-in:


Respond to a trip change request

Open your message thread with your guest and find Respond to request. If you agree to the changes, they'll be applied automatically, and your guest will be charged or refunded if necessary.

Things to know:

  • There are no penalties for declining a request
  • While there isn’t a time limit, responding to requests quickly can help you avoid canceled reservations
  • Guests can send trip change requests once a reservation is confirmed, and any time before checkout—even after they check in
  • Changes made to an existing reservation are subject to your listing’s cancellation policy

From what I've understood, you didn't see this "Trip change request", is that why you had to ask Airbnb to intervene?


I really hope you get a new reservation very soon,