Cancelling reservations because of host illness

Hello Everyone,

I’ve got the flu and need to cancel three reservations this week. Have any of you had to do this before? If it was just a cold, I would clean everything and just make myself scarce, but this is very contagious and could be dangerous.

I’m contacting Airbnb, but thought I would ask here as well.

Advise Air immediately. Ask that your guests be rehoused. Go to your MD and get copies of your prescription, and send same to the case manager involved. It is up to Air to decide whether or not you will be penalized.


Yes notify Airbnb. The earlier they know the earlier they can arrange substitute accommodations. Your guests will be unhappy at first but ultimately will appreciate it

I think it will be fine. As others have said, get with Airbnb and help under their extenuating circumstance policy. I had norovirus (a really bad, very contagious stomach bug) and I had cleaned the guest cottage during the time I was most contagious but had no symptoms. I didn’t have a backup who could go in and re-clean after me. Airbnb was great about rehoming the guests the same day. And the guests were fine – happy they were not exposed to what turned out to be a pretty serious virus. Airbnb told me they might ask for a doctor’s note, but did not.

I hope you feel better soon. It’s a bad one this year! Take care of yourself.

Have you looked at Airbnb’s extenuating circumstances policies for hosts. If not do have a read and make a claim under this.

You will need a certificate from your doctor.

If it is a remote listing, you could arrange for someone else to prepare it rather than lose the money.

To be honest I don’t think your listing would be contagious, if you don’t live on the premises, or to be honest even if you are.

Cold and flu viruses are not airborne. You can’t catch a cold or flu just by being in the same room as someone who’s sick. You generally have to come into direct contact with their oral or nasal secretions.

We tend to be liberal with our use of germicides. Knock on wood, nobody got sick. I did but it wasn’t contagious. Bugs like Norovirus or C-Difficile are horrible. Thank you for doing your guests and the community a blessing.


Thank you, Everyone! Airbnb was great. They helped settle things with the guests and I sent them the ER discharge papers (originally was told it might be pneumonia).

My house is relatively small and the bathroom is shared. With me having to use facilities and just being completely out of commission, this definitely was the right choice.

Thanks again. This forum is a great resource.


Take time to get better, sweetie

Hope you get some rest this week and feel better soon :crossed_fingers: