I was interested in a villa in Colombia for March (four months from booking). It was a large villa and I wanted to confirm the guest. I asked the host for three weeks to cancel, rather than his normal 48 hours. He agreed and this was documented clearly in Airbnb Messenger. I cancelled after two weeks as I could not organize the guests and Airbnb refused to return their service charges of $864.79, citing their policy.
The end result was Airbnb Customer Service protected the customer and left the host and the guest out to dry, the complete opposite of customer service and common sense. This wasn’t a last-minute cancellation. This was a documented exception for four months from now. Airbnb protected their bottom line and sold their soul.
I pity the poor people who are getting excited about the Tokyo Olympics with Airbnb. They are lined up for a living hell. Frankly, I think that any normal travel company would never have a strict 48-hour cancellation policy. That really is the opposite of customer service.