Unraveling the Airbnb Refund Policy: A Comprehensive Guide for Guests

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The Insider @ Houst
Last updated on
February 24, 2023

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Unraveling the Airbnb Refund Policy: A Comprehensive Guide for Guests

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Not every time is a good time to go on a trip. Sometimes, something comes up that is so important that you need to cancel your bookings and have to get your money back.

If you have a booked an accommodation on Airbnb, and want to know what’s Airbnb’s refund policy, then this guide is surely for you. 

In this guide, we will discuss how flexible Airbnb’s refund policy is towards guests, how many cancellation policies does Airbnb have, and what you get after you decide to cancel your reservations. 

Table of Contents

What is the Airbnb refund policy?

Airbnb offers several refund policies that hosts can choose from, depending on their preferences and the level of flexibility they want to offer to guests. The most common Airbnb cancellation policies are:

Flexible: Guests can cancel up to 24 hours before check-in and receive a full refund (minus service fees).

Moderate: Guests can cancel up to 5 days before check-in and receive a full refund (minus service fees).

Strict: Guests can cancel up to 7 days before check-in and receive a 50% refund (minus service fees).

Super Strict: Hosts can choose between Super Strict 30 Days, Super Strict 60 Days, and Super Strict 90 Days. These policies require guests to cancel at least 30, 60, or 90 days before check-in, respectively, in order to receive a full refund (minus service fees).

Hosts can also choose a custom policy that allows them to set their own cancellation terms. When booking an Airbnb rental, guests can see the cancellation policy for that listing on the listing page and in the confirmation email they receive after booking. It's important to read and understand the cancellation policy before booking, as it will determine the amount of refund you'll receive if you need to cancel your reservation.

What is Airbnb Extenuating Circumstances Policy?

Airbnb's Extenuating Circumstances Policy is a policy that provides guests and hosts with additional flexibility to cancel reservations or modify their reservations without penalty in the event of unforeseeable circumstances that are beyond their control.

Under this policy, guests and hosts can cancel reservations or modify their reservations without penalty if they are affected by certain unforeseeable circumstances such as:

  1. Serious illness or injury
  2. Death of a host, guest, or their immediate family member
  3. Natural disasters, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, or floods
  4. Political unrest, such as riots or war
  5. Travel restrictions imposed by a government agency or other authority

If a guest or host is affected by one of these circumstances, they should contact Airbnb as soon as possible to request a cancellation or modification of their reservation. Airbnb will review the request and determine if it falls under the Extenuating Circumstances Policy.

It is important to note that the Extenuating Circumstances Policy does not cover circumstances that could have been foreseen or that are within the guest or host's control, such as personal travel issues or job conflicts.

Airbnb Host Cancellation Policy

Airbnb Host Cancellation Policy is a set of rules and guidelines that hosts must follow when they need to cancel a guest's reservation. The policy provides clarity to guests regarding what they can expect in the event of a host cancellation and sets expectations for hosts regarding the consequences of canceling a reservation.

When a host cancels a reservation, it can cause significant inconvenience and stress for the guest, and Airbnb takes this very seriously. Hosts are encouraged to only accept reservations that they are confident they can honour and to communicate with guests promptly and honestly if a cancellation becomes necessary.

Under Airbnb's Host Cancellation Policy, there are different levels of penalties based on the timing of the cancellation:

  1. If a host cancels a reservation more than 7 days before the scheduled check-in date, Airbnb will not impose any penalties on the host. However, the guest may be inconvenienced and may need to make new travel arrangements.
  1. In case of a reservation cancellation less than 7 days before the scheduled check-in date, Airbnb will charge the host a penalty fee equivalent to the first night's stay of the reservation. The guest will receive a full refund for the remaining nights.
  1. A cancellation of reservation after the scheduled check-in time on the day of check-in, Airbnb will charge the host a penalty fee equivalent to the first night's stay of the reservation and will also mark the host's account with a "Cancellation" label. The guest will receive a full refund for the entire reservation.

It is important for hosts to understand that cancellations can harm their reputation and impact their ability to receive future bookings through Airbnb. Hosts are encouraged to be proactive in preventing cancellations and to communicate honestly and transparently with guests if a cancellation becomes necessary.

Airbnb Guest Refund Policy and Cancellations

Airbnb has a Guest Refund Policy that outlines the circumstances in which guests may be eligible for a refund due to issues with their accommodation. These circumstances include:

  1. Inaccessible accommodation: If the guest arrives and finds that the accommodation is inaccessible or significantly different from what was described in the listing, they may be eligible for a refund. This could include issues such as locked doors, broken keys, or incorrect directions.
  1. Inaccurate listing information: If the guest finds that the listing information provided by the host is inaccurate or misleading, they may be eligible for a refund. This could include issues such as incorrect amenities, photos that do not accurately represent the space, or incorrect descriptions of the location.
  1. Issues related to the health and safety of the guests: If the guest encounters issues related to their health and safety during their stay, such as safety hazards, pest infestations, or unsanitary conditions, they may be eligible for a refund.

In order to be eligible for a refund under the Guest Refund Policy, the guest must first attempt to resolve the issue with the host. If the issue is not resolved, the guest can then contact Airbnb within 24 hours of check-in to report the issue and request a refund. Airbnb will then investigate the issue and determine whether the guest is eligible for a refund, which may be a full or partial refund depending on the circumstances.

It's important for guests to carefully review the listing information and communicate with the host before booking to ensure that the accommodation meets their needs and expectations. Guests should also be aware of the cancellation policy for their booking, as cancellations may result in additional fees or charges depending on the host's policy.

Continue reading: Navigating Airbnb Support: How to Easily Get in Touch and Receive Assistance


Conclusion

In conclusion, Airbnb guest refunds play a crucial role in ensuring that guests are protected and satisfied with their booking experience. Airbnb's refund policy provides a fair and transparent process for guests to request refunds in case of cancellations, changes in booking conditions, or unsatisfactory accommodation.

While hosts may sometimes feel the impact of guest refunds, it is essential to maintain a healthy and trustworthy relationship with guests. By addressing guests' concerns promptly and offering refunds when necessary, hosts can create a positive reputation on Airbnb and attract more bookings in the future.

Overall, Airbnb's guest refund policy serves as a means to foster trust, reliability, and satisfaction for both guests and hosts. It demonstrates the company's commitment to providing a safe and enjoyable booking experience and reinforces its position as a leader in the sharing economy industry.

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider team at Houst is dedicated to providing up-to-date and relevant information on short-term rentals. If you have hosting inquiries, please write to us at expert@houst.com. For guest inquiries, reach out at guest@houst.com. We are here to help you navigate the world of short lets and look forward to assisting you with your needs.

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider team at Houst is dedicated to providing up-to-date and relevant information on short-term rentals. If you have hosting inquiries, please write to us at expert@houst.com. For guest inquiries, reach out at guest@houst.com. We are here to help you navigate the world of short lets and look forward to assisting you with your needs.

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