Reaching out to this Community and the collective wisdom. I’m having no luck getting answers and a solution to a hosting/listing problem. Here’s the story - back in July my area had a record 200 year rainfall that resulted in severe flooding. My Airbnb unit was hit hard and I had to cancel two months worth of guests while I completely rebuilt the apartment. While this was going on, Airbnb was wonderful and supportive and told me over and over again that I would suffer no penalties as a host. I have been up and going since October. Bookings have been down a bit and I’ve been wracking my brain trying to figure out what’s going on. Then I started to get “requests to book” rather than what I am used to via Instant Book. I’ve been in touch with Airbnb a few times trying to resolve this. They admit that even though my listing has Instant Book allowed, they have restricted me to having to approve each request. I don’t appear in a search when a guest selects Instant Book either. When I tell them this penalizes my account and that is exactly the opposite of what I was told - “no penalties” - they shrug and say there is nothing that can be done. Not only that, but no one seems to have any idea how long this purgatory will last. How can we elevate issues that the first line of Airbnb representatives have no answers?
Ask to speak to a supervisor. If that doesn’t work, I’ve been told that posting on Air’s Facebook or Twitter accounts usually gets action. There is no reason you should be penalized for something that you had no control over.
Have you cancelled any IB bookings since you started back up?
No! Except for the flood period, I never cancelled a single booking.
This has worked for me, turn off IB yourself for 24 hours then turn it back on. It worked to reset it for me.
I just turned IB off. Fingers crossed. Boy, you have to jump through a lot of hoops to make that change. Ironic.
Yes, they do not want you to turn it off! I had the same issue where all of a sudden I was getting requests and when I called CS they told my that it was due to a cancellation, that they made for me “penalty free” They told me my account would be reviewed weekly until the gods decided I was worthy for IB again (not exactly their words) that’s when I turned it off myself, back on the next day and it fixed it.
I have shared this advice to others on this forum and it worked for them as well.
Exactly what I’m dealing with. Thank you so much! I hope it works.
Do come back in a couple of days and update everyone whether turning IB off and then on again worked. TIA!
Tried it and left IB off for 24 hours. Hopeful as I turned IB back on, but it did not work. I just got a request to book rather than an instant book. Too bad no CS rep can give me any idea how long this “no penalty” punishment will last.
Thank you for the update @Arbek. I also lost my IB for a little while this Fall after a “penalty free cancellation”. Turning it on and off also didn’t work for me. I was told that there is a type of reassessment every 7 days or so. During that time, I accepted several new requests for that listing and sure enough, 7 days later, it was back. It may vary depending on other activity, I’m not sure, but that was my experience.
Try it for 2 days, can’t hurt it’s not really on anyways. Bummed to hear this did not work. Honestly I do not remember how long I left it off, maybe it was longer
I was told that too, that’s when I turned mine off.
It’s possible that when you turned it back on, that it was already turned back on by them by then. I tried your trick, leaving it off for 2 days but it didn’t work, but it did come back after 7 days.
edit to add: Your trick still made me feel better though! I was hopeful
That is possible who knows. I did grill the CS agent to show me in the TOS where it said a penalty free cancellation incurred a penalty… Of course they could not answer it. I am sure there is a clause in there saying they can do whatever they want.
Was the penalty-free cancellation for “I am not comfortable with this guest” and if so, did you already use up the 3 that you could use via the website for the year?
I know you’re not asking me but I went through the same thing. I had several cancellations all in a row, all for the same apartment. One was a “not comfortable”. And two were “cancelled by admin” but not from my initiation. One of the by admin was them cancelling a guest whose 2nd payment didn’t go through and then informing me afterwards. The other by admin was a woman who didn’t get her dog pre-approved and I told her she couldn’t bring the dog but if she cancelled right away that I would give a full refund (it was within the 5 days of my moderate policy) - I noticed that it went through as an “admin” cancelation. I also had a regular cancellation during that time from a guest whose plans changed but was before the 5-days.
I have heard that it’s multiple cancellations on IB that will get it shadow-banned. I have had other cancellations of various types that didn’t cause my IB to drop so I am thinking that it was the numerous cancellations in a short period that caused it. CS implied as such.
On another note, having IB dropped for a week, didn’t really hurt me because I got requests and booked that month 93% - I was lucky that it was a busy time when it happened.
No, they opened my calendar on a blocked day and it got reserved. Of course I could not prove it, because there is no way but they cancelled it for me “without penalty”
No, I had to cancel bookings due to a massive flood city-wide - a 200 year historic rainfall of 4 inches in one hour. My Airbnb unit had major damage and subsequent rebuilding. I was told over and over, “no problem, no penalty, this is a situation out of your control.” My biggest complaint is that indeed there is a penalty AND no one can tell you how long it will last.
This is making me think that it must be something automatic in the algorithm. I haven’t seen any reports of anyone having it “fixed” by CS and lots of variations on what happened prior - I have even seen it reported that it happened after 3 guest cancellations within a certain period of time (just regular, change of plans cancellations).
I was told “at least 7 days” and it was 7 days for me. However it was mentioned that it’s reviewed every 7 days so it implies that it could be 7 days or 14 days or…depending on circumstance, but, again, it makes it sound automatic in some way.