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Third-Party Bookings—Policy and Response


#1

I understand that third-party bookings (a booking made in the name of someone other than the actual guest) are against Airbnb policies. I have questions:

  1. I’d like to read the policy, but I can’t find it. Where is it?

  2. Which of these are third-party bookings?
    A. A husband who makes a reservation for his wife who’ll be traveling alone
    B. A parent who travels with an adult child, and the parent books both rooms in the parent’s name but says the child will stay in the second room
    C. Someone who books both of our rooms as a gift for friends who are coming to visit them
    D. An adult who books for herself and an unnamed friend in one room
    E. Someone who books for a friend/relative that is traveling and is unable to access the internet

  3. What to do about third-party bookings?
    A. If I know ahead of time that it’s a third-party booking, what should I do?
    B. If the person shows up at the door and it’s clearly a third-party booking, what should I do?


#2

https://www.airbnb.com/help/article/1311/who-can-book-trips-on-behalf-of-someone-else

For business travelers it’s okay: https://www.airbnb.com/third-party-booking

Pro tip: Airbnb has help pages with a search feature

A, C, E If the guest stays at your airbnb it’s not third party regardless of who is with them.

A: Discuss beforehand and get them to book properly. You may lose the booking though

B: Call Airbnb and get them to help you.


#3

They may not help like they use to. Originally they were very anti 3rd party bookings, but they have downgraded that response now. I have called a few times and the CSR basically said NBD if you are comfortable keep the booking. Obviously up to your own comfort level.


#4

I absolutely agree but you don’t have any other options if they show up at your door which is what I was answering. I guess you refuse to let them in assuming you are greeting them in person.


#5

Totally. I was thinking before things get that out of control :joy::joy::joy:


#6

For us it’s just a case of feeling comfortable with the third party booking. Sometimes we accept, sometimes we get them canceled.

We had a mom make a reservation for her teenage sons. At first I was very concerned and even made a topic about it. But the mom was very transparent about it all and also swiftly and kindly answered all of the questions/concerns we had. In the end the boys proved to be well educated and lovely guests.

The one we canceled was a son, who wanted to send over his father, but who also thought that we should call his father directly to get all the information we needed. That was definitely a bridge to far, even for us: We are generally super flexible with our guests.


#7

This has been my experience as of late as well.


#8

Thanks, everyone, for your input. I feel much better informed now.


#9

If a guest has made it plain in the Airbnb message system (like saying quite blatantly ‘I am booking this for my wife’) then tell them that it’s against Airbnb policy and that the wife (or whoever) will need to book herself on her own account. Despite the fact that Airbnb might be a bit more lax about it these days, I don’t want any evidence in writing on the platform that I knowingly accepted a third party booking.

This is just me being cautious (really, not paranoid!) in case Airbnb are ever looking for any reason whatsoever to boot me out.

When I’ve pointed out to the booker that third party bookings aren’t allowed, they’ve always cancelled - I’ve never had to.

I once had a guest turn up whowas a third party guest without me really realising. A couple had booking using his account. She arrived alone. English wasn’t her first language but she sort of implied that her boyfriend was arriving a little later. It was only after the house tour and once she’d settled in that she admitted that her and her boyfriend has split up and that she was here alone. I didn’t have the heart to kick her out!


#10

I wish there was an easy way to IB hosts to cancel guests that are third-party bookings without having to phone CS and be on hold for an hour.


#11

I have strict booking and generally wait the 2 day grace period before I contact guests. I require id of all guests staying in suite so that’s when I usually figure it out. I let them know it’s against Airbnb policy and that they have to contact Airbnb to fix. Since the guests will lose money if they cancel, I tell them they have to contact Airbnb (provide. phone number) and have them arrange for them to fix the reservation. I document this in writing so that the customer service person sees that I’m ok if they rebook without losing. I don’t help guests anymore. They made the error so they can fix it or lose the money.


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