Awaiting payment message from Airbnb

We got an Awaiting Payment booking from Airbnb this morning. Have never seen this before, but here’s what the notation said: “This reservation is almost confirmed. We’ve asked this guest to complete their payment within the next 23 hours, and these dates will be held until then.” I called Airbnb specialists and was told the guest had put in a credit card that had been denied and they were waiting for them to supply another. She said they’d been getting calls from hosts about this lately, but she wasn’t able to explain why this is being done differently than Accept and Decline allowing the host to decide whether to hold the dates open on the calendar until the guest gets back to me. Anyone else had this experience? Is it a new thing? Seems unfair to the host, especially if the guest has no other card and won’t end up booking.

If you do not want the dates blocked then call and have CS cancel the reservation, or if it is IB cancel it yourself as uncomfortable. Get on the phone, stay on the phone and do not take no for an answer.

Or ride it out


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We recently had a 5-day reservation cancelled and this was the same response I got. Once I was transferred to a supervisor, the explanation was just that they are being more stringent with payment issues then before.

I got a notice that the “guest cancelled” and was surprised because it was a really busy week for my city and he was coming for the main event but just thought he had an emergency or something. However, the guest contacted me and was really upset that he had been cancelled. So, he hadn’t actually cancelled, they cancelled him. Apparently, his credit card expired between his 1st and 2nd payments. It was so stupid. This man is easily searchable on google and is a VP of a big company and owns a dozen patents that all come up immediately on the first page of a google search. He wasn’t unable or unwilling to pay his bill. He is a busy person who just didn’t check his secondary email for a couple of days and then ended up cancelled. We had re-booked in the meantime and didn’t have a place for him. It was a bummer all the way around.


Is the two-payment plan the default? I thought that was an option the guest had to choose.

BTW, I’m pretty sure Airbnb didn’t just cancel, but attempted to contact the guy via phone/message/e-mail and cancelled after he was unreachable for at least a day, maybe longer.

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I don’t know. It seems to change. A few guests have contacted me saying “Oh, is there anyway I can pay it all at once? Can I change it?” so I get the feeling that the way it’s presented might be confusing.

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Yes. He was in Antartica doing research. Seriously. Has 18 5-star reviews from the last 9 months alone. It wasn’t a big risk, I think they over-reacted and I think I should’ve had a say in it. They let him re-book down the street for the same dates so it defintiely wasn’t some ongoing issue.

I also resent that the message I received was that the guest cancelled but when I called in they admitted that they had cancelled the guest but that they count it as a guest cancellation.

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Airbnb confusing? Pshaw!


I just got a message along these lines less than 5 minutes ago. A guest that booked months ago asked to bring a pet so I went to request money to charge the agreed upon pet/cleaning fee request and got the attached message. I asked the guest about and he is going to call ABB bc he thought they paid all at once.

Also, I was given an option to pay for a recent stay in one sum or two. Seems they are billing the 2nd payment approx two weeks before the reservation.

I don’t remember this being a question for a host before … Just a random ABB decision, imagine that!

We can debate party houses and BS Chesky statements and reviews and bad guest forums and every other controversy until the cows come home but Airbnb absolutely has two things to do, bring us bookings and get out payment. When they start screwing that up on a widespread basis they are going to be in trouble.

Cows coming home:


We use black lines on dementia units for the opposite effect - most patients, at a certain stage, won’t cross over them. On the occasion that we do need them to cross over them, we put a white mat down to cover the black stripe. Someone needs to cover that stripe for those poor cows!


A two payment plan was definitely the default for my recent experience as a guest. I booked two weekends in November about two weeks ago and each time I did not actively choose to split the payment it was just set up that way as the default. In my hosting life, a recent guest asked me “how much do we owe” for the second payment? I believe it’s more common than before based on my experience.


Our case seems almost the opposite. Rather than canceling when the credit card didn’t go through, they put the dates on hold on our calendar. I did message the guest that airbnb is awaiting payment, and asked what time she expects to arrive that day, but have not heard back from her.


That last response was meant for Brian’s comment about his guest being cancelled by airbnb.

I experienced this early on this summer, with just a week to go before the booking was due to start, over a usually very busy holiday weekend. When I called Airbnb, they said that the payment was still being processed; on pushing, they admitted the guest’s card hadn’t gone through, so they hadn’t paid anything yet. They refused to cancel it, so I was left uncertain whether the booking would actually complete over a lucrative w/e.

My solution was to message the potential guest with the problem, adding that although Air were holding her dates, they were still open on other platforms and could be booked ahead of her.

She had no idea that her card had failed; they hadn’t told her. She completed the booking there and then successfully.

Lovely guests too!

Curiously, it appears BDC are the same.

We had a recent guest who’d been issued with a new credit card, with a different number, and the second payment failed. I can see this being an issue with Airbnb also, especially if the booking is a fair way ahead.

Worked in our favour though, guest got cancelled by BDC, contacted us as they thought we’d cancelled her, then ended up booking direct. Coming back for Flamenco festival in Feb and may be booking direct again. Their loss (of commission).


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I’ve actually had 2 recent guests call me and ask about the 2nd payment and I had to tell them they have to call Airbnb. I’m assuming that means Airbnb isn’t doing a great job of telling guests how the payments work.

I’ve read this before, but I honestly wonder if it’s true and Airbnb did try to contact the guest at least by e-mail and message, if not a phone call too, and guests are ignoring them.

I’ve had payment problems with 2 of the last 3 guests. A reservation was made, money was due because of a change in one case and a resolution center request for a pet fee in the other case. In both cases I got some money from the guest but not all of it. I don’t understand how someone’s payment method can work one day and not the next. And I’m not talking about hundreds of dollars, I’m talking 97 in one case and 15 in the other. There are a few possible explanations:

*The guest is right up against their credit limit.

*The bank thinks the charges in different cities each day are suspicious and they can’t reach the guest to alert them.

*Airbnb sucks.

I’ve periodically had these episodes of a cluster of issues around the same time with Airbnb. It’s really annoying when the calendar is blocked and we think we are missing out on bookings. But at least I have always eventually gotten my money and many months will pass with no problems.

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My guest said that the only thing he received was an email stating that his card wasn’t processing but that it came after the cancellation notice. He got both emails 2 days after they were sent and contacted me immediately but we had already re-booked.

I looked around last night and there are a lot of other discussions about payment issues right now so definitely seems like some kind of


I depend on Airbnb to bring bookings and process payment. I expect to deal with 98% of the other issues on my own. They just spent 4 million on a failed campaign in Jersey City. Maybe they are actually manipulating the float.


I had a similar issues over the weekend. Guest IB’d at 10pm and was coming the following day but I didn’t get any notifications. I just happened to login to adjust prices and saw a message that a guest booked, but there was a payment problem. My dates would remain blocked until the matter was settled. I sent the guest a message and she was completely unaware there was a problem. She called CS and managed to work it out and was a great guest. My payout was a day later than normal though.