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Preparation time workaround?

Does anybody have a workaround for this? I’ve got the cleaning badge and all that, but I still want to block 3 days (72 hours) between guests. I want to let the unit sit for two days, then clean late on third day (well after a normal book in time), or the morning of the fourth day, to be cautious. The Airbnb canned max prep time is 2 days on their drop down menu. I’ve thought of switching from IB to Inquiry only, then manually blocking days as soon as I get a reservation and hoping no inquiries come before I can do that, which seems a pain, or calling Airbnb and asking them to rescind my cleaning badge so I get the default 72 hours between bookings, which is certainly not ideal.

Are you going to be that busy that you’re going to get back to back IBs before you have time to go onto the platform? It seems the two days between bookings setting and then as soon as you get a booking go in and manually block additional days.

Even if not very busy, it would take just two bookings “too close” (with even an entire empty rest of the month), then I’m stuck. I just don’t want to mess with it – I want 2 days vacant that I don’t have to go in there, and then a third day and lots of time to do a really proper cleaning job. Tho I guess I could use my free IB declines if push comes to shove.

Handling a routine booking as an inquiry instead sounds like just as much work as making sure you go to the calendar and block another day or two as soon as you get a booking. I realize not everyone is tied to their phone the way I am.

Fiddling with calendars, and this approach sounds nuts but may work. I block all Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, leaving open for bookings of 2 nites minimum every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. Try it for a couple months and see if I get any business. Currently I am only taking private bookings. I am very fortunate in that STR is not a critical source of income.

In that case look at the rule sets too.

Isn’t this what you want?

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Yeah, but I lost the booking buffer when I took the quiz and qualified for the cleaning badge. I can’t get to 3 days between bookings from here.

Create a rule and apply it to the dates that concern you.

If you haven’t enabled Professional Tools you will need to turn that on first.

I’m sure that a year ago, you could simply specify the number of days. Now I see that there is a drop-down that only allows you to select either 1 or 2 days.

Perhaps you have something in Professional Tools that we don’t? Unfortunately, there is nothing in ours that allows for “days between” etc.


I don’t ever remember an option to input the number of prep days, but I’m pretty sure the choice used to be 1, 2, or 3 days between bookings.

Listing --> Booking Settings --> Gives option to set time between for preparation window, etc. Would that help?

If you edit your availability settings, do you get more options than just 1 or 2 days for preparation times for your listing?

I thought it used to be longer but I am only seeing two days btwn now. Dang it. They could make this so much easier … Augh.

There seems to be two schools of thought that Airbnb is following when giving advice, and both completely different.

This from the Cleaning Handbook, which would suggest that as long you ventilate for 3hrs, you can still keep the “badge”.

Check your local authority for guidance on how long to wait before entering a space occupied by a person who may have been exposed to COVID-19. For example, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests waiting 24 hours. If that’s not possible, we recommend waiting at least 3 hours, which is what the European CDC recommends. This waiting period is for your protection and helps to ventilate the room, to limit your exposure to aerosolised virus droplets that may be in the room. For up-to-date information on cleaning standards in your region, visit the Airbnb Help Centre.

The CDC in the US says 24hrs, but Airbnb is suggesting that in Europe it is 3hrs.

This is the relevant paragraph from the “COVID-19: EU Guidance for the progressive resumption of tourism services and for health protocols in hospitality establishments

In case a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 has been present in an indoor space, this space should be first well ventilated for a minimum of 1 hour, and thereafter carefully cleaned with a neutral detergent, followed by decontamination of surfaces using a disinfectant effective against viruses. Alternatively, 0.05-0.1% sodium hypochlorite or products based on ethanol (at least 70%) can be used for decontamination after the cleaning with a neutral detergent. All potentially contaminated textiles (e.g. towels, bed linens, curtains, tablecloths, etc.) should be washed using a hot-water cycle (90°C) with regular laundry detergent. If a hot-water cycle cannot be used due to the characteristics of the material, bleach or other laundry products for decontamination of textiles need to be added to the wash cycle.

Given a choice between who’s advice I’d rather take, I know who has dealt with shit better…


Great question, I too am having a problem navigating this. But my issue is the 2 days before and 2 days after rule…does this actually mean 4 days between guests? Ie: one guest leaves, 2 day buffer after check out, new guest books, 2 day buffer before check in! So is it the original 2 days after check out? Or the 2 days after and 2 days before equaling 4 days total in between stays?

Nope, should be just 2 days between, going by how my old 1 day buffer worked.

Swell if 24 hours, or even 3 hours, protects my guests, but I also want to protect old, asthmatic me! After all, as a deceased host, I wouldn’t be able to make my space available to any future guests.
Opening the door and all the windows in winter is kind of a non-starter, as is air-conditioning the out of doors by doing same currently, in the summer temps.

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@Michdes The Airbnb wording on that setting, as with much of Airbnb’s wording, is unnecessarily confusing and misleading. They just don’t seem capable of stating things in an unambiguous way., hence your confusion is warranted.
The “2 days after” doubles up as the “2 days before” the following reservation. " Nowhere is this explained. “Block 2 days after” simply means that there will be 2 days blocked from booking after the Booking A. But you can get a Booking B on the 3rd day.

So just think of it as “Block 2 days between reservations”, which is how it should read, and how it, in fact, works.

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