Unilateral Change of my Cancellation Policy by Airbnb

Airbnb has overridden host cancellation policies in response to the coronavirus outbreak. This allows guests to cancel at any time without any penalty and without any justification. I have just had a cancellation for £2500 with just three days’ notice and there is nothing I can do about it. I was not consulted and the guest did not have to provide any proof or justification about the virus. Guests have travel insurance for genuine cases but hosts have no fallback provision. Airbnb does not care about their hosts. They bite the hand that feeds them.

Posted in Airbnb Host Stories and tagged , , , , , .


  1. When we first caught wind of the virus, our team contacted all future guests, starting with the earliest arrival dates. We assured everyone that even though we have a NO CANCELLATION policy and Airbnb is a Super Strict 60, we were issuing everyone a future credit. Our business model is that we pass the money onto the homeowners as soon as we receive it. The homeowners are really the ones that dictated this decision and we have the contracts with the OTAs that allowed us to support their decisions (almost 70 homeowners). Then Airbnb guests starting canceling, with no penalty. We are now in debt to Airbnb for more than $70K and we have to basically turn our business into a ponzi-scheme or money laundering operation–which is a logistical nightmare! From here on, Airnbnb is forcing us to take reservations for one home so that we can pay back another – we are in the weeds!!

    @rbirbank I agree there was a certain amount of responsibility, but we took it by issuing the future credit. Airbnb breached our contract, took decisions into their own hands and made our company look like liars. One day guests are told they have a future credit and the next they are told they can cancel. How’s that working for brand loyalty? Part of me feels like Airbnb did that on purpose to show they are the good guys. Now, where is the $250M stimulus they promised homeowners?! I won’t be surprised if that trickles out into the Airbnb host space as a fraction of the amount they stated, most likely as a PR stunt.

  2. Absolutely agree with you, the shady dealings of Airbnb have been outrageous. First changing the contractural terms of their hosts, secondly directing new booking enquiries towards their hotel arm and thirdly sending out notifications to those booked stating that there was an “incident” in the place of booking when there was none, frightening guests into cancellation. Thankfully there were caught out profiteering by issuing coupons for future stays and pocketing the reservation fees and taxes. The tide is turning against them and many forecasting their financial fall from grace very shortly. If you are due a refund try and get it quickly!!!!

  3. As much as I dislike AirBnB I have to agree with them on this one. You don’t know if the guest caught the virus and why would you want someone staying at your place that might infect others? You’re in the hospitality business and should know the risks such as this.

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