New cancellation policies: Booking overlapped stays is possible!

Some of you ( including myself) have commented about the updated version of the cancellation policies that are now active in Italy. Today I opened the URL of the new policies and find something that was a total surprise for me.

Under “Additional Terms” you will see a paragraph that says:

Canceling overlapping reservations
If a guest books a new reservation that at the time of booking overlaps with any part of an existing reservation made by the guest, the Airbnb guest service fees will be non-refundable for this new reservation.

Rounding up: A guest can book a place (A) and another one (B) for the same travel dates to save the ones he likes most. His wife was smart and told him to book another one © with her account. Suppose all of them have Strict cancellation policy so that 30 days before check-in they will have to make a desition of which one is the one they are going to stay. He cancels B and C and Airbnb charges him the service fees of B only. “B” and “C” will now have 30days to find a new guest to filled those dates now available. Isn’t crazy?

It just gets worse and worse, eh?

Thanks for posting. So much for the “claim” that Air was doing all this because travelers were confused by cancellation policies. Of course that wasn’t true. I just saw this:

"Up to 5 fully refundable bookings
Guests are eligible for up to 5 fully refundable cancellations per calendar year. Once a guest has received five fully refunded cancellations, the Airbnb guest service fees will be non-refundable for subsequent bookings in that calendar year; and the Airbnb guest service fees will be non-refundable if at the time of booking the sum of the guest’s fully refunded cancellations and outstanding bookings is equal to or greater than five."

Lol! If I didn’t know any better I would say that Airbnb hired old Homeaway execs for advice.


Looks like they are making marketing by saying book with us with no commitment at all. I mean, is great for the guest to have extra protection (TOO MUCH IN FACT) to break a rental contract but a different thing is using that to catch new guests. This looks like trying to sell a car not by its features but by how great we are to cover you when you crash it.

Seems like they are trying to compete against booking and others that offer FREE cancellations. But the booking platform is not at all a fit for Air hosts.

Really sickening.


Exactly, we are not a hotel that can edge our losses through the use of overbooking and having multiple rooms vacant depending on the travelers’ cycle. In Europe is becoming more and more common to have no cancelation options if you want to get a decent price, i.e. you pay big bucks for some fairly strict cancelation policies.

p.s. I bet that there is no overlapping bookings for us though! ::evil grin::

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Even the hotel I booked in Prague has a cancellation fee. All the ones I looked at charged more for free cancellation.
Airbnb is still 90 percent home sharing. People renting out bedrooms or granny suites. How can they impose this terrible policy on mom and pops like this! It’s a race all right. A race to the bottom. :frowning:

Indeed, neither hotels (with their big money pockets) have cancellation policies as flexible as the one we will be providing which refunds the nights not spent for guests that decide to leave before their stay ends.

It’s totally crazy. I doubt there is a hotel in the world that would refund you non used nights after have you already paid and checked in.

Is that what they said in the investor calls?

Random Thought. With these policies, that company that was trying to convince us to take out loans from them based on future earnings… well, that could be a HUGE mistake for us hosts!

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Read this and weep.

I love how they can add this to current reservations and we didn’t have a chance to agree to it. There was no email to let you know effective whenever… Ugh.

And, does anyone know if there are any changes to the IB policies of cancellation? Because from what I’ve not been able to find it doesn’t seem like there’s any benefit to IB any longer, unless it just works well for you.

It’s just crazy to me, it’s like they’re trying to push out hosts!

If that becomes the end result it matters to us…but not to them.

While the guest policies get so lax, it’s almost FREE to stay at someone’s house. Change your mind? No problem! ALL your money back!

The host can go cry in their beer.

To us in the US, they have not unleashed these on us yet… for those poor souls in Italy, I am just so so sorry… it’s dreadful and wrong.

The link that I posted has no mention of Italy.

Right… those are the current policies, and they still suck.

If we as hosts cancel a reservation we will have to deal with:

  1. A penalization fee that could reach up to 500usd.
  2. An automatic review in our account that will screen our bad behaviour.
  3. Blocked calendar. We can’t accept new reservations for those dates.
  4. Lost of Superhost status and lost of the chance to get it for at least a year.
  5. 3x cancellations in a year might lead to an account suspension.
  6. You can’t cancel a reservation that has already started.

Instead if guests cancels a reservation.

  1. They might get no penalization fee at all (Airbnb will refund their service fees too). Book free!
  2. No automatic review to warm hosts that he cancels one or many stays.
  3. There is no restriction for you to book again another place for the same travel dates (*)
  4. Achievement of a SUPERGUEST badge. Coming soon? LOL
  5. You can cancel as many times as you want. We are happy you do that as long as you pay our services fees after the 5th cancellation.
  6. If you cancel a reservation that has already started you might get 50%/100% of the nights not spent.

(*) For item 3. Not only you will be able to book another place for the same dates if you cancel your active reservation but that you don’t need to. You can book two or more place for the same travel dates while keeping active your current reservations

I must say that I fully agree with the penalties for hosts because I believe we have to honor our reservations as a commitment. But, still, don’t you think they are “just a bit” unbalanced?