When Guests phone you to Cancel! How to handle off platform?

I was just caught off guard by a guest booked to arrive on Monday who booked under that “low demand promotion “!, I answered a call and he said who he was and the weather is bad so wants to reschedule. I have a strict booking policy. He wants to go boating.

I felt uncomfortable and said I was out and had to look into but message me through AirBnb and said he had a special low rate.

That’s the first time that has happened a call direct. How should Hosts handle this?

Tell him to cancel, you have his number… clear the stupid promotion and offer him a direct booking so he save the extra booking fees

You do not need to do anything, let him cancel per the policy he agreed to


Either he cancels – never YOU – or he pays you in full.

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Thanks I messaged him through the platform saying if the dates got rebooked I could offer a credit if he decides to cancel providing dates get filled. I advised the reservation was under
the terms on the booking.

I thought it was weird he rang me though.

Not that weird. Some guests just don’t get it that stuff like that needs to be done through the platform, especially if they are new to Airbnb.

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He probably rang because he wanted to get out of the cancellation policy he booked under @Debster

Absolutely I would have messaged him back and say sorry he wants to cancel. That he needs to do so via AirBnB and it will be processed under the policy he booked under.


Is your number posted on Airbnb for booked guests to view? I would delete it. I do provide my number, but only after check in, just case they need anything.

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Guests are shown hosts’ phone numbers as soon as a booking is confirmed.

Is it optional? I don’t recall providing my phone number on Airbnb. I think that I just have the address for the property visible to booked guests.

@Ritz3 Yes, you would have had to provide your phone number when you opened your account. Not optional for it to appear on a guest’s confirmation, as far as I’m aware.

If you check your profile info on your hosting acct., I’m sure you’ll find that it’s there.


Personally, we refer any direct contact relating to cancellation back to the original OTA.

Sorry I say, but X has your money, we don’t. You must deal with them.

It’s only happened a couple of times in the past three years or so, one got refunded, one didn’t.


Thanks, the guest has decided to come now.

I future I won’t answer calls from unknown numbers. They can leave a message.

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We bought a cheap SIM, put it in an old phone, and then registered that number with all our OTA’s.

As far as we’re concerned, that is now classified as “the work phone” and we know any calls are from guests, or an OTA.

When you receive a booking, add the guests number as a contact (with a relevant identifier), and if you receive a call you know exactly who it is, most of the time. It’s not foolproof, but can help you make an informed decision as to whether you answer or not.



This!! This has saved my bacon - and the guests’ as well - many times. It’s a great way to keep in touch with guests after they leave, too. I get their name, phone number, and email addresses and add them to my guest database. It’s a terrific marketing tool


Just tell them to cancel the arrangement with Airbnb. You really have no relationship with the guest until they arrive.

They have found you through Airbnb, their booking is on your calendar on the Airbnb site, they paid their money to Airbnb so they have to cancel with Airbnb. Simple. I’ve never had a guest have a problem with this.

It’s not really. Different people are comfortable communicating in different ways, that’s all. Like most other hosts, I summarise phone conversations in the message system.

Do you have a dedicated phone for you Airbnb business? If not, it’s a good idea to get one. You can tell guests that it’s only for use between 9 am and 6 pm except in emergencies. 99 guests out of a hundred will abide by it. :slight_smile:

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You provide contact details when you set up your account.

Why wouldn’t you want to provide an emergency contact for guests @Ritz3 what if your guests have a problem while at your listing ?

If you don’t want to give out your personal mobile buy a separate one for managing your STR booking.

I do provide my guests with my phone number but only after check in. I leave them both my mobile and home number.

I thought Airbnb provided it, as soon as the booking became non refundable, no?


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