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Changing Cancellation Policy After Accepting a Booking


Hi guys,

I’m new to these forums but have a question regarding cancellation policies. I’ve had a look around but haven’t found anything specific to my question so just wanted to get some feedback.

When I originally set up my rooms earlier this year, I set them with a flexible cancellation policy, and things have been going fairly well so far. I received a booking a while back for two guests to stay for 4 nights including New Year’s Eve. As we’re starting to get quite busy now I’m looking to change the cancellation policy to moderate so that we’re covered (5 days prior) if they decide to cancel at the last minute. I’ve already clicked on ‘change reservation’ but there only seems to be the facility to change the listing, dates or number of guests, not the cancellation policy itself.

Does anyone here know how I might do that? Or is it just not possible, or ethical?

I appreciate any info or comments.

Many thanks



If you want to change your cancellation policy you can go into your listing and do so but it will not affect your current bookings only those that booking from the time you make the change. This applies to any changes you make such as price increases etc.

It obviously can’t apply retrospectively as this would be a change to the terms and conditions under which a guest booked.

Do have a look at Airbnb’s Help Centre - this will answer lots of commonly asked questions for new hosts along with the guides in it’s Community Centre.


Great, thanks. That makes perfect sense. I’ve since changed all listings as we’re approaching the busy time of year, but yes, it makes sense to honour that agreement.


It’s not just the cancellation policy but anything in your listing. Say, for example, you promise a kitchen and you book to someone 6 months in advance. Between now and then your oven goes out and you no longer have the kitchen they can use. You have not delivered on promised amenities and this can get you in trouble with Air. And yes, they are able to look up what was in your listing T the time to booking was made and you will be held to it.


That’s a very good point, thanks.


Yes I’ve been caught out on that! It’s very challenging if you want to update Amenities and have lots of advance bookings and need to remember who you sold what to!


I has the same thing when I was booked for a whole month of February and then guest’s started to ask me if they get refund if the cancel . I looked at my policy and was shocked to see that it was set to flexible. Not even sure how that happened since I always from day one have it on strict.
Anyway I contacted guest and they reassure me that they won’t cancell. I called Air and they told me it’s impossible to change it after the booking.
So now I just hope all will go smoothly.


Did you ask Airbnb to verify when it was changed and proof this was done from your ISP, given you are positive you didn’t change it. No doubt it’s their stuff up, this they are legally responsible to bear to burden of any costs associated?