Oh for God’s sake. Now they are getting hosts to bear the brunt again by forcing us into a flexible policy if we want to get bookings. Bloody brilliant
It’s exactly what I would expect from Airbnb. The only way for an owner to have absolute control is the take absolute control and not book on any platforms, that is, direct booking only.
Yes, bad news for hosts. But what I expected from Airbnb.
Feck’em, I’m not being persuaded to underwrite folks travel plans. I’ve adjusted our pricing to target BDC & VRBO/HA guests.
This fluffy, guest centric approach, simply hammers hosts. Well, not this host.
What are your thoughts @DestinationCO
I clicked on “Contact” at the top of this article and it gave contact information for Asian, Europe, South and Latin America - not North America. I was was going to ask about a possible search ranking boost for hosts who had a virus related cancellation given it says “We will also provide promotions that increase visibility for these listings to drive new bookings.” As I mentioned in another thread - I had a cancellation today that stated my state is on a not-to-travel to list from a university located in a different state.
The “contact” is also only for press inquries. No mention of how the hosts will be contacted with details.
Edit - I failed to read to the bottom of the article - it says “The Airbnb Newsroom is aimed at journalists. All Homes and Experiences referenced on the Airbnb Newsroom are intended purely to inspire and illustrate. Airbnb does not recommend or endorse specific Home or Experience listings on the Airbnb platform.”
OMG does this mean I have to give up my strict cancellation policy and deal with the nutters who play the “hold a week in high season and start making changes within free cancellation time period” games?
What is Air going to do? Drop me from searches? Lower my ranking? Ack.
Just checked my listing in an incognito window and I am the first listing. I am usually anywhere from 4th to 12th so maybe there was a boost.
I am still getting bookings, 2 this week though Air and one direct booking. although one cancelled because the private school her daughter attends cancelled events due to CV and I let her cancel w full refund. Repeat guest, her child is in school here she will be back… I am sticking with strict for now. I think that the bookings will keep coming. My place is in the mountains, away from people and will likely appeal to people who are not wanting to fly. Fingers crossed that this will be a good year. I am more worried about my real estate business, but interest rates are low we shall see.
If only… I did get one this week and I am using google advertising to get people to my website, I am collecting actual email addresses from Air guests and will be sending out specials, 3rd night free that sort of thing. Nothing from that huffy site though, I actually forgot I signed up for that until just now. I hate FB but I may start advertising there too. Hell I may even give craigslist a try.
Oh, I fully understand the power that the booking sites have. And if you are in a location where the local chamber of commerce or university or hospital isn’t an option it’s even tougher. I expected things to get bad in this industry soonish due to climate change. I guess this will give everyone a trial run on dealing with making a living on rentals in an uncertain world.
I wouldn’t get too freaked out about it yet. I seriously doubt that all hosts with Strict policies are going to rush to sign up. If those perks they mention are anything like the perks they dangle to keep hosts chasing the Superhost carrot, I’d take them with a grain of salt. For instance, lots of Superhosts who lost that status have said it didn’t effect their booking rate at all. And even as a Superhost with 5* rating, my search ranking isn’t high because I don’t use IB.
I actually think a filter for cancellation policies isn’t a bad idea, since so few guests seem to bother to pay attention to the policy in place for a listing, or read the actual terms. (I especially love the ones who pay half up front, cancel under a 50% refund policy and are irate because they think that means they get the half they already paid refunded).
Maybe it would eliminate a lot of nasty disputes with guests who think they’re entitled to a full refund, the savvy ones managing to come up with an extenuating circumstance that Airbnb accepts.
(sarcasm alert!) I love this:
100% Airbnb Guest Service Fee Refund
We will also do our part to provide guests more peace of mind. For bookings made now through June 1, 2020, if guests need to cancel and are not due a refund of the Airbnb guest service fee, we will refund that fee as a travel coupon which can be used on a future trip.
“Travel coupon”. Pffft.
Translation: We are doing our best to force our hosts to give all of your money back when you cancel, but we’ll be keeping those service fees, thank you.
In other words, if they don’t cancel in the first 48 hours. I’ll bet that coupon has an expiration date, too. So if the guest can’t travel in say, the next 3 months, they won’t be able to use it. Nice to know their spin doctors are hard at work. Meanwhile, there’s tons of hosts worldwide complaining about missing payments, which has been going on for at least half a year. Each one gets told it’s a tech issue that they assure the host the tech team is working hard to fix. It’s become so obvious that that’s a lie, and I imagine they’ll be withholding even more host payouts to make up for their declining revenue re coronavirus.
Imagine if the nightly rate were refunded in the form of a coupon that guests could use only at the same listing within one year.
Ideas like that are why Airbnb doesn’t want any hosts on their policy-making teams.
Well I just accepted a “flexible” res for tomorrow. Checking in at 9:00 checking out at 5:00
None of my business…
Hey, the place is ready and empty, it replaces tonights booking that cancelled related to CV
Im ok with it, likely they will not be late leaving because they need to get home to their respective spouses…
As an occasional guest, I’m glad to see them add more search filters. But as an allergy sufferer, I still wish that they would also add a filter for “animals on the premises”. Not every place that isn’t marked “pet friendly” is pet free, which is a problem for me.
I virtually do this. I have a strict cancelation policy, but if someone cancels I offer the option of another time or sometimes just a deep discount when they rebook.