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How has moderate cancellation been for you?

#1

Airbnb’s work category requires a flexible or moderate cancellation policy. And, whilst I’d love to be listed in the work category, I’m petrified by such policies for the following reason…

As an expensive property, I can easily imagine someone booking us in advance and then looking for cheaper alternatives closer to the date. Especially considering Airbnb’s new short-notice discount policy, they could potentially find equally good property’s and then cancel mine. I mean, they could even cancel mine and then benefit from my own short-notice discount.

If you have a moderate cancellation policy, I’d love to hear how it’s gone for you. Do you get many cancellations? Also, if you are listed in the work category, did getting listed cause any noticeable difference in booking rates and client types?

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#2

@Fahed, I think I’m right in saying that no matter what the cancellation policy is guests still have to pay the Airbnb fees. (Whether this is transferred to the new booking, I’m not sure). But guests are discouraged from cancelling, just as we are. (For hosts, it’s easy for us to think that Airbnb is guest-centric but guests think the opposite is true!)

We started out with strict but changed it to flexible and hardly see any difference. One positive to look at though is that every time we’ve had a cancellation (not often) we’ve been able to fill those dates. I think that Airbnb shoves your listing up a notch in search results if you’ve had a recent cancellation.

I’ve found that putting the listing on Twitter with a comment about ‘due to cancellation - this fabulous apartment available (dates)’ usually fills gaps if Airbnb doesn’t. Also once you’ve been hosting for a while and have had lots of back-to-back bookings you can sometimes heave a sigh of relief at a cancellation as it gives you a few days to get that carpet cleaned, the dripping tap in the bathroom fixed, various overdue repair and cleaning jobs.

I love business guests. They are out most of the day and don’t cook much. Our area has a lot of conferences and expos so often a business traveller brings their spouse/partner and because the apartment sleeps two, the business person’s company is paying for the accommodation for them both :slight_smile:

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#3

We have a moderate cancellation policy. It works pretty well, the only time it is annoying is if someone books and takes up the dates for weeks and then suddenly cancels right before they would incur the 50% penalty. We had someone once who didn’t read our listing and didn’t realize it was private rooms in our house that we live in and tried to threaten us into a full refund but he didn’t get it :slight_smile:

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#4

As in a Twitter advert? Or do you have a following? Or is there some type of hashtag for discounted properties?

I can imagine! Need to get there first though!

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#5

How often does that happen in comparison to completed bookings?

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#6

Not very often really. It seemed like happened more often in the beginning. We edited our listing to make it more clear that we live in the house so it doesn’t happen as often anymore.

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#7

Yes i do and luckily, it followed by people who either live locally (and can recommend my places to their friends who are coming into town) or people who would like to visit here.

Not an ad - free :slight_smile:

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#8

I have moderate cancellation. In the past 9 months, with almost continuous bookings, I’ve had 2 bookings do exactly what you described. The good news, I quickly rebooked so no lost revenue, just my time was wasted on the shoppers. I think moderate gives guests comfort for booking early because they aren’t ‘locked in”.

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#9

That happened to me the other day for a longer-stay guest that canceled just before the 50% penalty would kick in. I was pretty annoyed about it. But it’s the first time in my 2 months of hosting that has happened. The only other cancellation I’ve ever had is when I asked the guest to confirm how many kids she had, and it put her over the max limit for my house, and she got bent out of shape when I told her.

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#10

Well too bad for her. She was Probably one of those people who will let their small kids rampage around your house anyway.

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#11

I had that happen too. Booking for 2 adults and 1 infant. Max guests allowed =2. Infant was 18months old so toddler. I explained the toddler was a guest so over the maximum guest limit. Very unhappy parent.

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#12

Actually, AirBnB considers anyone under 2 to be an infant. Pretty ridiculous, but that’s the rules, and they don’t count toward your max house limit.

The lady that I just got a bad review from in retaliation for making her pay for all guests told me that she had “an infant and a toddler”. Her profile says her kids are 2 and 5. Even if she genuinly thought a 2-year old should be considered an infant (ummmm… NO), in nobody’s world, not even Air’s, would someone consider a 5-year-old a toddler. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

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#13

@jkamm

You are correct about Airbnb not including “infants under 2 years of age” in the guest count. What some guests fail to read is the disclaimer the host may include infants in their count.

If someone brings their 6 week old infant, I don’t mind.

A toddler who can walk, fall on tile flooring, hit their head on a coffee table, fall down steps, etc. is a different matter.

I imagine some marketing person who didn’t understand the difference between infants and toddlers said, “this hotel chain offers “children under 12 stay free”, how about we say infants under age 2 are not included in the guest count so they stay free if there is a per guest charge?”

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#14

Nope, you’re wrong. You can charge a guest fee for children, not infants.

Can children travel on Airbnb?

Yes, children can travel on Airbnb, but some hosts have specified that their space may not be safe or suitable for children or infants.

Infants (children under 2 years old) aren’t counted as guests when you’re booking a reservation and don’t incur any extra costs. Some hosts count children as guests, which can add an additional guest fee to the reservation.

AirBnB defines “children” as something different than “infants,” and they each have their own set of policies.

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#15

I agree.
202020202020

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#16

Good info. Interesting read.

All Infants are children but not all children are infants.

Another opportunity for interpretation.

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#17

I have moderate cancellation but I try to book 30 days or longer. If I have gaps I open my calendar to weekly guests. I’ve been doing longer term for two years. Last week I had my first cancellation of a 34 day booking and the guest was canceling 9 days in advance. Airbnb wanted to give me 30 days of the booking, a substantial sum. The guest was totally freaking out. She was a student coming for an internship and “finally” they found her accommodations at the student dormitory. I carefully weighed the karmic consequences of keeping the money and decided to refunded the entire amount and I crossed my fingers. That night I got a new reservation for 45 days (better). I have found that despite Airbnb telling me to reduce my rates to fill in gaps, that if I’m patient I get someone to fill in and usually at the last minute.

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#18

Nice work, @Karen! See, people, sometimes good deeds do go unpunished …

We have moderate cancellation, mostly for the reasons @Annet3176 gives. We’ve never had a cancellation yet, I think mostly because there are not many places here where a place for only two guests gets you access to an almost private pool.

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#19

Hi iam new to airbnb. this is exactly what i am trying to find out , how long is the moderate cancellation ? days?.. and what other option is there? As my establishment policy on my website and other advertising sites is 30 days non refundable. I am willing to reduce to 14 days non refundable. your suggestions would be appreciated
tks Nita

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#20

Nita, please go onto the Airbnb site and you’ll find all the information you need.

Note that this forum is independent and we’re not affiliated to Airbnb in any way. We are a bunch of (mostly) experienced hosts who are happy to help with new host queries. However, in many cases, you’ll get more accurate information from the Airbnb site itself - that will be your best bet.

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