Special offer vs. Change of stay

Today I got my first booking with instant booking. My guest will be arriving tomorrow and he will be leaving in about 10 days. However, due to a technical glitch (aka my husband misunderstood the ‘leave a day between guests’ feature and removed the 1-day between guests I had set) we now have this guest’s check-out on the same day that the next guests arrive… at 7AM!

The 7AM-ers were booked long before we owned the property and so cannot rediscuss the check-in time, plus they are coming from a 12-hour long flight so we can’t really tell them to hang around until afternoon. These guests are regulars and come every year, so we don’t want to lose them. Therefore, my only option is to alert the Instant booker that we cannot have him for the last night of his stay. My question is; in terms of AirBnB rating, would it be better to change his reservation or to offer him a Special offer where I discount him that last night? I am new host and this is my first guest.

Can I change the reservation once he has checked-in? He is a business traveler and had to leave his current accommodation due to conflicting schedule at his current place, so I sense that he will be going to another place in the city after mine.

Special Offer is a completely new booking.
I have accidentally submitted a special offer and had the guest accept - thus ending up with two bookings for the same dates, but in two different properties.

Change or Cancel is where you can submit an alteration to the guest.
You can also set the price to include the discount when you go to the Change or Cancel.

1 Like

I would definitely go back to the 7amers and explain they can’t check in at that time as they are effectively checking in the night before. Explain as a compromise you will take their bags but they will need to come back at x time to complete check in

I agree with Zandra and I’d also make out that it is not so much an error as contacting them to verify that you’ll be happy to check their bags in at 7am as agreed but you do have another guest checking out that day so they’ll then need to leave until around 2pm when the room will be cleaned and ready for them to have to themselves. Remind them this is 2 hours prior to your normal 4pm checkout so hope they appreciate the favour you’re extending them. First however, contact your departing guest and check what time they plan to leave. I’ve had heaps up guests leave between midnight and 2am for flights and never mention this plan when they booked. If you are lucky it won’t be a problem if the guest is leaving early.

If they are not, you can expect them to change their plans, the guests checking in will have to IMO.

If you cannot have the business traveller on his last night, no alteration (or special offer) will do the trick: you are effectively unable to host them for their dates and should cancel their trip. Short of a miracle, any alteration request would be denied by the guest.

(You will not be able to change the reservation once he has checked in.) Obviously wrong and corrected later.

In terms of rating, booking alterations or special offers have no effect.

I would offer one night and at other place to either thje air bnb guest or the other one.

I am wondering if some of you read this part.

@PennyM All depends on the setup of your place, but the solution will always start with communicating with one or both parties.
I would try to talk to the people arriving at 7AM, but please offer them a better solution than “Leave your bags, get the hell out of here and return later.” They probably won’t have a problem with their room not being ready, as long as you bring it to them in a nice way and maybe offer them something in return. Maybe they can have a nap on your sofa or something, and/or you can offer them a night at 50% rate.
You could also offer the first guest a free last night with the condition of an earlier checkout. He might also accept if you explain well.

About the guest who is checking out that day: If people make a reservation for 10 nights, they probably need 10 nights and they won’t be satisfied with 9 nights.

Read it but it still wouldn’t change my course of action. And since they’re ‘regulars’ they should absolutely be understanding of the fact they can’t have the room so early because there’s a guest still sleeping in the bed!


Thank you everybody for your answers. It looks like somebody skipped the part “the 7AM check-in was agreed with the previous owners”. I agree that it is business killer to allow people to book this early without paying also for the night before. :rage:

I was explained by the property manager that these guests have already changed their plans because they come to Buenos Aires every year and they want to stay at this place as they love it and it is in an excellent location for their endeavors here. This is the 4th or 5th year in a row that they come. I was also explained that they are very methodical and take always the same flight at the same time. (I am saying this because the chance of them agreeing to check-in later are slim). They are coming from Europe on a 12-hour intercontinental flight.

The business traveler is here for way longer than 10 days, but he is unhappy with his current accommodation, spotted mine at a promotional price and wanted to take advantage of it as long as possible before moving to another AirBnB. This is just to say that there won’t be 12-hour flights involved in this case and that I am not spoiling anybody business trip.

I am meeting him today with a bottle of wine and I will explain him the situation and I will also talk to our property manager (who used to work for the former owners and that we are keeping for this transition time) to see if he can convince the other guests to check-in at a later time to allow to clean the apartment.

Originally, I contacted our PM to ask him if their rental agency had an alternative accommodation for that night (and possibly longer, as the business traveller is hopping from AirBnB to AirBnB), but he said that 1-nighters are a pain in their calendar so I am pretty much on my own. Maybe I should make this the PM issue rather than mine. He said the other set of guests was arriving on a certain date, so I blocked that day on my calendar and not the day before because it was a 7AM check-in.

However, if Pierre says that You will not be able to change the reservation once he has checked in. then I am at a loss - the European guests will have to change their check-in time.

They are regulars for sure, but what strikes me is that @PennyM is now stuck with a check-in at 7AM before they owned the property. I guess it is the professional property manager who offered a 7AM check-in. If it were me, I would say there is a new sheriff in town.

And now I see that is precisely what @PennyM has replied just above :slight_smile:


Please disregard my earlier comment. I think I made a mistake, and I am going to blame it on a hangover or sugar overdose: OF COURSE you can alter the booking once a check-in has occured.

With the additional details, it seems like your best course of action is to change the dates with the business traveller.

1 Like

Yes with the additional information the best is to alter the dates with the business traveller

1 Like

That’s good to hear. I had a startling start of the day when I read that line! :astonished:

1 Like

To be fair, a 12hour flight is about as close as we get from Australia, we often have to travel for 20-30 when going overseas and don’t get special treatment checking in, even st 5 star hotels unless you pay for it. I don’t think a 12 hour flight is cause for you to feel bad asking these guests, sorry telling, that they will need to checkin at x time & leave them a wine or the like (30% off the first night if you must) for any confusion.

They have likely picked that exact flight each year to travel through the night and save on a nights accommodation so are primarily motivated by cost saving so this is your best ‘hook’ to ‘sell’ them what you need. Their primary motivation is not respect for the host (who clearly can’t have another guest check out if they are arriving at 7am) or planning their holiday accordingly to check in at a reasonable time so you can’t sell them on sympathy for you /other guest or being reasonable. They love their routine so will probably come back if you handle it right.


First - don’t expect your guests to take the brunt of your mistake. They did not do anything wrong. Don’t mess with the 7 AM people - but tell them next year they cannot show up at 7 AM without booking that night as a night (unless you want to give it to them as a “perk” for being a return guest).

Tell your business traveler that you inadvertently made a mistake and that he has to check out a day early, and refund him that last night (of course), as well as one other night for the mistake.

1 Like

The business guest was very accommodating and I was able to change his reservation through Airbnb. We gave him a very late checkout on the previous day, though, and a bottle of wine (which we wouldn’t have provided on a discounted rate). He seemed to appreciate it and very understanding. We were lucky and… lesson learnt! Thank you everybody for your help and suggestions!

(About the 7AMers, I think they had the early check-in perk because they are regulars.)


I’m glad this all worked out. As a guest I’d be extremely annoyed if I had a booking in place for months, was a regular somewhere and I got a notice that “there’s a new sheriff in town.” Especially if I had booked this place for years because I could check in on arrival without paying for the previous night. I’d be looking for a different accomodation if that was the host’s attitude. I’m going to assume everyone posting about how you have to lay down the law about the 7 am check in just have poor reading skills and aren’t this unkind while hosting.


For future… I would first verify whether the 7AMers did or did not pay for the additional night. They may have. Check with your property manager because you will need to decide for subsequent years…whether you will continue to extend an additional free night to these repeat guests.

You will never be able to rent out the previous night if they always get a morning check in. If the discount is worth it…then by all means continue to accommodate.

But if this time period was during your peak season with high demand…it may not be worth it to give away a night. Just something to consider…

1 Like

It’s not about laying down the law. It’s about what is reasonable… and these guests have been taking advantage for years because they could.

I have checked and the 7AMers did not pay for an additional night, as their reservation reads 17 nights and by dividing the total amount per number for nights I get a whole number, whereas if I divide it by 18 I get a number with lots of decimals. Also, they are checking out at 7 PM, so that’s two nights lost!

From what I understood, things were managed in a lax way before: the place is not big (by US standards) but it is not quick to clean (there is a terrace, a solarium, a bedroom with wooden floor, a wooden staircase, and then the living room and the bathroom with tiles, wooden furniture to wax, etc. Hence, they usually left at least one day between a guest and the other.

I have now checked again the “leave 1 night between guests” but I don’t understand if by doing so it will effectively block the night after a check-out on all of my synced calendar or just on AirBnB.