Does refusing a guests' changes to their booking automatically cancel the booking?

Hello all,

I’m in a bit of a bind. At 11.30pm on the 20th of March 2015 (Yesterday) I was informed by AirBnb that my shared room had been booked for the 21st of March (incredibly short notice I know!) What’s worse is that the guest messaged saying that they intended to arrive at 8am! Incredibly short notice! Now I notice the booking within 15 minutes of it happening and promptly try to cancel it but to my dismay, I am told that it is too late to cancel a booking. I find this to be quite hypocritical that a guest can make a short booking at such an incredibly short notice without having the decency to send a prior request but I as a host cannot cancel the booking at the same short notice that they had given me…

Now, here is the dilemma. The guest has just changed the conditions of his booking to arrive on the 22nd of March (tomorrow) and I now have the option to either accept or refuse his changes. I want to refuse the changes but I am wondering if in doing so, his entire booking would be cancelled?! I really hope that this would be the case but I just want to make sure that this is the case before I proceed.

Also, I tried to get in touch with my local AirBnb (France) but they are shut…I don’t want to cancel the booking before talking to them. Because I will be subjected to a $100 fine despite the fact that the guest booked so last minute.

I have written to and texted the guest advising him to cancel the booking from his end. He doesn’t seem so keen to do so…

Has anyone ever been through this? Any advice?! It would be much appreciated - thanks in advance!! :slightly_smiling:

Hi Pauline,

Why exactly do you want to cancel the booking? Sorry if I’m misunderstanding.

Try Twitter @airbnbhelp they tend to respond faster

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I’ve got exams on Friday and last minute (yesterday( I had to help a friend out whose lease finished but she couldn’t find another place until her next lease starts on Friday. Thankfully, she’s on my masters course so she has the same exams and we’re revising together. I just feel that a guest would get sucked up in the revision stress bubble and with it being a shared room, might not be the best AirBnb experience. Had it been just me, I might’ve been able to work around it by working in the kitchen etc but with 2 people revising, it’s a bit tricky…

I don’t have a twitter account :worried: Do they have a facebook account? I could try to get in touch with them there?

No experience with this issue so I’m not of any help here, but I can’t understand why any guest, if asked to cancel a request, wouldn’t do it. Obviously if a host asks me to cancel, it means they don’t want me there, so why would I insist on showing up? ugh. Sorry to hear this is happening to you.

Thanks for your concern. They requested to change their booking to the 22nd. I declined this request but sadly, the booking wasn’t cancelled :sob: I really don’t want to be subjected to a $100 cancellation fee when the guest booked less than 12 hours before their arrival time :cry:

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I’m wondering why, because of your hectic week, you didn’t block the days on your calendar?

*sigh I know. I’ve been really busy of late and quite honestly forgot. Had my friend not needed me to bail her out last minute, it might have been ok and I would’ve been able to handle it but it’s just that her unforeseen circumstance threw my week off…

But surely shouldn’t there be some kind of protocol against such last minute booking?! I mean, he booked at 11.30pm on the 21st wanting to turn up at my door at 8am… Imagine if I’d already gone to bed at 10pm and left for work at 7.30am. I would have been none the wiser to this exchange. My only issue is that as a host, I can’t cancel a booking 7 days before the first day but he as a guest can book less that 9hours before arrival?

Yes, I’m still slightly new to this - I just finished hosting my second guest on Sunday morning before my friend got in touch.

@Pauline_Obl - what is your check in time? If a guest books and says they are arriving at 8am (a ridiculous time) just tell them that your check in time is 4pm or whatever time you have specified in your listing. If they don’t abide by that they are breaking your house rules.

And please remember to check and adjust your calendar every day :slight_smile: Use a reminder on your phone and use the Airbnb app - it only takes a few seconds.

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Was this an instant book?

I just checked the conditions of my booking - it appears that I missed this part of the forms. And it turns out that both check in and departure times were flexible - I just changes this so that it was after 4pm and before 9am respectively. Considering I just changed it now, I don’t know if it’ll apply to his booking…

Thanks Jaquo now I’ll need to make sure I’m on it…lesson learnt!

My refund policy is flexibly so he should still be able to get a full refund (minus the charges of course)

Sadly it was…I’m looking into how to change these settings in my listing…OR at the very least have a minimum time that one needs to book.

Great that you changed it Pauline. That will help a lot in the future :slight_smile:

But on my Instant book settings, I had the advance notice as minimum one day - thinking that one day would be understood to be 24 hours. But according to AirBnB, one day is only defined by the calendar date so someone could book an accommodation at 11.58pm and say their arrival time would be 00.15 the next day and that would be fne?!? That makes no sense to me…

I’ve now changed from Instant booking to one where I have to confirm the guests

Thanks Jaquo! I hope so. :slightly_smiling: I guess I have no choice but to host this guest considering I can’t afford the fine… I just hope that they are discrete and don’t distract from my revision…*sigh

Thank you so much for your advice though! :slightly_smiling:

:slight_smile: Good idea to switch from Instant Booking. I use it at the moment and don’t have problems but everyone’s circumstances are different. I live opposite our rental so I can keep a close eye on guests because I work from home. But in your circumstances IB sounds too tricky.

Pauiline, i am on IB for a year, and use it very succesfully. You can not have IB and be on flexible check in. Its just impossible. What if you had guests the night before? They are still sleeping and someone checks into their room??
Anyway flexible check in , check out doesn not mean they can just book and not even inquire when they can check in. Flexible means exactly that flexibility, it does not mean “any time”, it means if there is a possibility then an early check in is possible.
Also why you have flexible cancelation policy. Its very dificult to get any kind of income with this policy. With multirooms hotels flexible cancelation is ok, but not with 1 or 2 rooms .

If you have IB and flexible check in, this is what will happen, they instantly book and assume they can come anytime. MyIB guests sometimes show up half an hour after booking. I am well prepared, room is ready. I send them message right away asking time of arrival. I dont have flexible check in out times, and my cut off time at night is 10 pm.
IB means they can book right away, but then its up to you how you set your settings:arrival, check out, advanced bookings. You can all set it depending on your situation.