Huge AirBNB Cancellation Charge

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Winston19
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Winston19 »

Kenkat wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 8:17 pm With negative publicity on a high volume site such as this, I’d say the AirBNB brand has already suffered more than $1,200 of damage. Are you listening AirBNB? You should be...
I think Airbnb has bigger publicity problems.

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cherijoh
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by cherijoh »

edudumb wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:17 pm I really don't think the comparison with Hilton/ Marriott is fair.

When a hotel room is booked, the guest is promised a room (of a certain type), but the guest doesn't know which room (out of the hundreds on the hotel property) he's getting. Hotels have great flexibility to move guests around.

When an Airbnb room is booked, the guest is promised the same room listed. Airbnb hosts don't have the same flexibility, and therefore most don't offer the same "reasonable" cancellation policies.

In OP's case, his son cancelled 2 hrs after, and I agree that it doesn't do any damage to the host. Again, in the past, before the 48-hr cancel policy was in place, no refunds would happen whether a guest cancelled it one minute or one month later. Airbnb introduced the 48-hr cancel policy, and I don't know why it didn't apply to long-term stays. But the policy is there, and the host is promised the money. It's not fair for the host to release the money if he doesn't want to. Airbnb can pay OP back, but it'll come out of Airbnb's pocket.

You have to put into perspectives that a lot of guests cancel their reservations for a lot of nonsense reasons. As a host, I always tell people to make up their mind before they make the reservation. If they cancel, no refunds (within Airbnb's policies), but I sometimes offer them a discount should they book my place in the future. In OP's case, the host has no incentives to offer anything given OP's son will never stay at the place in the future.
I do understand about cancellation fees and can see why there would be a larger cancellation for a long-term rental, because the entire period is blocked out and they would receive no rental income. However, that would only impact the host if he/she lost bunisess because of the cancelled reservation. It would make a whole lot more sense if they gave people 48-hours to cancel long term reservations if they were more than 30 days (or maybe 45 days) out. Or something along the lines of booking a packaged travel deals - 100% refund if > x days before booking; 50% refund if between x and y days before booking and 0% refund if less that y days before booking.
spectec
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by spectec »

I have family members who have used AirBNB with success, and I had resolved to try them on my next trip. But a situation of this type, citing hidden policies and difficulty locating the fine print, already causes me to re-think whether I'd risk doing business with them. I hope the OP is able to obtain a more fair resolution of this ridiculous application of an unreasonable policy.
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SrGrumpy
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by SrGrumpy »

MotoTrojan wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:34 pm A concise and well written 1 star review is in this hosts future I hope.
It's nothing to do with the host. It's blanket - and seemingly covert - Airbnb policy. My commiserations to the OP.
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leeks
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by leeks »

SrGrumpy wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:06 pm
MotoTrojan wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:34 pm A concise and well written 1 star review is in this hosts future I hope.
It's nothing to do with the host. It's blanket - and seemingly covert - Airbnb policy. My commiserations to the OP.
But the host could choose to be reasonable and refund in this case!
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fortfun
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by fortfun »

This is the mold that covered the ceiling of the last AirBandB that I stayed at. I asked for half my money back. The owner wrote a scathing/false review of me--even though I was very polite and didn't do anything wrong. He was just angry that I asked for a partial refund. AirBandB agreed and gave me an entire refund but would not remove his scathing/false review of me. Since AirBandB does not protect its customers, I will no longer do business with them. Water was actually dripping through the ceiling into the kitchen.

Image
Last edited by fortfun on Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
SrGrumpy
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by SrGrumpy »

leeks wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:08 pm
SrGrumpy wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:06 pm
MotoTrojan wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:34 pm A concise and well written 1 star review is in this hosts future I hope.
It's nothing to do with the host. It's blanket - and seemingly covert - Airbnb policy. My commiserations to the OP.
But the host could choose to be reasonable and refund in this case!
Agreed. Good karma, and all that.
chessknt
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by chessknt »

I would work on airbnb customer service more--talk to someone in person, not in email.

I once used Expedia to book a hotel during a cross country moving trip and while in Nebraska had horrible weather with funnel clouds and tornado force winds driving everyone off the freeway so we took shelter in the nearest place we could find and couldn't make it to the reservation. The hotel was some dump that wouldn't refund me and after about 45 minutes on the phone with Expedia I got a refund through them given the circumstances.
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fortfun
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by fortfun »

chessknt wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:45 pm I would work on airbnb customer service more--talk to someone in person, not in email.

I once used Expedia to book a hotel during a cross country moving trip and while in Nebraska had horrible weather with funnel clouds and tornado force winds driving everyone off the freeway so we took shelter in the nearest place we could find and couldn't make it to the reservation. The hotel was some dump that wouldn't refund me and after about 45 minutes on the phone with Expedia I got a refund through them given the circumstances.
Booking, Expedia, etc. generally have good customer service. I did not get anywhere with AirBandBs customer service (sadly...).
Katietsu
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Katietsu »

stats99 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:31 pm OP here. Thanks to all replies. Some good information.

Just to clarify, although some listings do indeed show the Long Term Cancellation policy on the listing, this Host did NOT show that. In fact. under the policies section of the listing was only the "strict" 48 hour cancellation terms. We have a screen print. It was based on reviewing the policy on the actual listing that he felt he could cancel within that period.

Only after we called did AirBNB point us to a location in their general website.

Thanks again!
My experience for the situation you describe is that if you look at the listing with no dates specified, it will show strict with the 48 hour cancellation message. However, if you specify the dates and the time period exceeds 30 days, the cancellation policy type will show as long term and you can click on it for the details.

Could son originally have looked with no dates listed and seen the 48 hour cancellation? But then did not notice the change in cancellation policy when making the final booking? Did you put in dates before taking your screenshot? This might explain why AirBnB thinks there was sufficient notice and you do not.


I do understand that given the quick cancellation and many days until the start of the rental, it seems harsh to lose $1200. However, I suspect your son missed the change in cancellation policy and he apparently missed a house rule that was not acceptable to him. I think it is important for your son to realize his part in this. He will likely be signing many contracts in his life. I would encourage him to be amongst the minority of people who actually read the policies and regulations.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by jbranx »

This post is now in the Personal Consumer Issues Forum. Moderator Jbranx
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4nursebee
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by 4nursebee »

fortfun wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:38 pm This is the mold that covered the ceiling of the last AirBandB that I stayed at. I asked for half my money back. The owner wrote a scathing/false review of me--even though I was very polite and didn't do anything wrong. He was just angry that I asked for a partial refund. AirBandB agreed and gave me an entire refund but would not remove his scathing/false review of me. Since AirBandB does not protect its customers, I will no longer do business with them. Water was actually dripping through the ceiling into the kitchen.

Image

One can publicly respond to reviews.
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curiouskitty
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by curiouskitty »

I’m noticing three repeated fallacies in these comments

1. People call this policy covert, hidden, or act like it wasn’t shown to the user. In fact, it says very clearly ON THE SAME PAGE that one month isn’t refundable. I’ve attached the screenshot so we can stop acting like Airbnb hid something. This is on the listing page even on mobile! The OP’s son wasn’t paying attention and it’s unfortunate but to act like something was hidden is disingenuous or coming from people who haven’t looked at the UI themselves.

Image

2. People act like Airbnb should refund when the policy clearly states they owe money to the host and guests cancel probably 10,000 times per day so they can’t eat the cost...

3. People who have never used Airbnb comment that they will not try it after reading this for short term rentals even though Airbnb allows a larger refund window than non-refundable hotels do. People are so upset by something that happened with cancellation on a long term rental policy that they ignore that it has nothing to do with short term rentals and effects a very small percentage of renters.

The situation is unfortunate, there is no doubt about it. If I were the host, I would most likely refund you unless I thought I wouldn’t be able to rent for that time. But ultimately, like I said before, you’re doing a long term rental and I’ve never had luck getting money back from a realtor or a Craigslist post before. I once moved out of an apartment after someone showed up at my house with a gun (in a neighborhood that was worse than I realized initially) and the owner would not let me out of the lease unless I found my own replacement for the unit I was leaving due to having a gun in my face. That is as uncool as it gets in my book, so should we all boycott Craigslist for apartments?
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Rainier
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Rainier »

Thanks for all the data points cementing my concerns for using AirBnB. Not necessarily the OPs, but others have some good examples. My problem with these sites is the ability for the host to cancel for any reason with very short notice.

In this case are there state contract laws that could help you? For example, I know in CT you have the right to cancel certain contracts within three days. Might be worth looking into. AirBnB cant make up policy that violates state laws.
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curiouskitty
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by curiouskitty »

Rainier wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 5:50 am My problem with these sites is the ability for the host to cancel for any reason with very short notice.

In this case are there state contract laws that could help you? For example, I know in CT you have the right to cancel certain contracts within three days. Might be worth looking into. AirBnB cant make up policy that violates state laws.
If the host cancels they get a bad automated review saying they canceled and how many days before. They get charged $50-100. They can’t get superhost status. After 3 cancellations in a year, the listing is suspended. Pretty strict to discourage cancellations.

Then Airbnb gives you a discount and helps rebook you. Really not so bad IMO considering it’s rare since people won’t book if your reviews are full of cancellations.

Yes if state law says otherwise then you may have a longer refund window.
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8foot7
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by 8foot7 »

Jags4186 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:57 pm
8foot7 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:41 pm Dispute the charge. If there is this much confusion about it then that’s on Airbnb to refund after two hours. This wasn’t weeks later.

If dispute fails, then write out a letter to the HOA of the place and send it to the Airbnb host - “I’d like to work something out with you but I also feel a duty to let the governing body of your unit know that I was very dissatisfied as a short term renter of your unit with your policy, so I’m prepared to send this letter to your HOA, but if you can relieve my dissatisfaction then I won’t have any reason to send it”
The HOA won’t care. The CC company will likely not let you skate on a $1200 charge.

Unless there is blatant false advertising I suspect the OP is boned.
The HOA might care if he’s running a rental when he’s not supposed to, and there’s a better than average chance that’s the case here...
spitty
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by spitty »

1--Wonder how much of this $1200 the host gets? I'd appeal to their decency for a refund of their cut; most of us would do this, not being out to hose our fellow citizen. If it's a management company working on behalf of owners, good luck :x !

2--This long term rental policy should allow the same 48 hour cancellation...especially being months out on the rental. Nobody's hurt and they'll most likely get tenants anyway. And it seems like you need to dig a little deeper to see the cancellation clause on a long vs short term rental. A gotcha!

3--If all else fails ---> massive social media bombardment! Over 4000 views here already, and OP posted just yesterday. And if hosts are ugly, a copy-paste of their rental.
Jags4186
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Jags4186 »

8foot7 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 6:09 am
Jags4186 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:57 pm
8foot7 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:41 pm Dispute the charge. If there is this much confusion about it then that’s on Airbnb to refund after two hours. This wasn’t weeks later.

If dispute fails, then write out a letter to the HOA of the place and send it to the Airbnb host - “I’d like to work something out with you but I also feel a duty to let the governing body of your unit know that I was very dissatisfied as a short term renter of your unit with your policy, so I’m prepared to send this letter to your HOA, but if you can relieve my dissatisfaction then I won’t have any reason to send it”
The HOA won’t care. The CC company will likely not let you skate on a $1200 charge.

Unless there is blatant false advertising I suspect the OP is boned.
The HOA might care if he’s running a rental when he’s not supposed to, and there’s a better than average chance that’s the case here...
So your suggestion is to attempt to blackmail the AirBnB host? I’d send a letter like that to the police.

The HOA likely does care he’s renting the unit and if he only does long term rentals (30+ days) it’s probably because the HOA stipulates no short term, i.e. less than 30 day rentals. Having read enough HOA documents and seen this go down in real life, I can almost guarantee that’s what’s going on here.

I appreciate wanting to get money back from a service you never used. I also appreciate that many times when people sell services or product through a site (eBay, AirBnB, etc.) the seller/provider shoulders all of financial burden. So while I am sympathetic for the OP, I also am sympathetic for the service providers.
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8foot7
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by 8foot7 »

I don’t consider it blackmail if the guy has $1,200 of my money that by any objective standard he shouldn’t have and refuses to return. I see it like credit reporting — telling a third party about a financial experience.
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JonnyDVM
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by JonnyDVM »

Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
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miamivice
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by miamivice »

Something to note about cc disputes:

It doesn't resolve the issue or make the debt go away. It simply revokes the payment for the debt that you incurred by agreeing to the transaction.

Meaning - you still owe the money and the merchant can come after you to pay. For example, they could sue you in small claims court, put a notice of unpaid debt on your credit report, etc, to recover the payment.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by miamivice »

JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
Try this: Lease an apartment, and then change your mind the next day. Do you get your money back?

The issue is that he agreed to lease it as a long-term unit rather than a short term hotel stay.
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JonnyDVM
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by JonnyDVM »

miamivice wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
Try this: Lease an apartment, and then change your mind the next day. Do you get your money back?

The issue is that he agreed to lease it as a long-term unit rather than a short term hotel stay.
Did OPs son physically sign a lease? I’ve never rented an apartment myself without signing a lease in person. Not the same thing. In fact I used to rent out a unit myself. There was a lease. If someone signed and wanted out the next day I’d be annoyed but I sure wouldn’t keep their security deposit.
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Strayshot
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Strayshot »

This sounds like a $1200 life lesson for the son, from the experience he should take away that legal language and obscure policies are a fact of life and understanding contractually what you are getting yourself into is extremely important and takes due diligence. The fact that the realization about the situation not working came but 2 hours later clearly reflects that not enough due diligence was done upfront in my opinion.
Better this than loosing $10000 in a real estate transaction or who knows how much in the purchase of a whole life policy!
tibbitts
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

Maybe I missed it in this long thread but what was the issue with the house rules?

Meanwhile, some will remember my post about Chase refusing to reverse the charge on my card for an Avis car that I supposedly rented while I was 1000+ miles away. If Chase wouldn't do that, and they ultimately refused to, why would anyone expect a card company to reverse a charge based on terms and conditions being a click away? I wouldn't even bother to pursue this with the card company.
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ClevrChico
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by ClevrChico »

JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
I agree. Whether hidden or obvious, this is a pretty harsh fee. Plans can change and there needs to be some accommodation within a certain amount of time. (At least for an accidental click, gosh.) This is another reason to use a traditional business setup for this sort of thing - a hotel.

I've seen credit cards surprisingly offer protection for travel cancellations like this. Most likely they will remove the charge.
tibbitts
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:24 am
miamivice wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
Try this: Lease an apartment, and then change your mind the next day. Do you get your money back?

The issue is that he agreed to lease it as a long-term unit rather than a short term hotel stay.
Did OPs son physically sign a lease? I’ve never rented an apartment myself without signing a lease in person. Not the same thing. In fact I used to rent out a unit myself. There was a lease. If someone signed and wanted out the next day I’d be annoyed but I sure wouldn’t keep their security deposit.
I rent hotel rooms all the time without signing a lease in person. If I don't show, I get charged for a one-night stay, without having ever physically signed anything.
tibbitts
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

ClevrChico wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:44 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
I agree. Whether hidden or obvious, this is a pretty harsh fee. Plans can change and there needs to be some accommodation within a certain amount of time. (At least for an accidental click, gosh.) This is another reason to use a traditional business setup for this sort of thing - a hotel.

I've seen credit cards surprisingly offer protection for travel cancellations like this. Most likely they will remove the charge.
Lots of hotels, almost all including the biggest chains, now give you a choice to pay more and have free cancellation privileges, or pay less and have none. If you cancel you usually pay one night's cost - but you're also usually only reserving a few nights or a week. You might owe only one night for a hotel, but you also might be paying three or four times as much for every night. Most people buy based on a combination of cancellation rules and price.

Some credit cards do have trip cancellation protection, but it's only for things like medical issues, not changing your mind.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Katietsu »

curiouskitty wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 5:18 am I’m noticing three repeated fallacies in these comments

1. People call this policy covert, hidden, or act like it wasn’t shown to the user. In fact, it says very clearly ON THE SAME PAGE that one month isn’t refundable. I’ve attached the screenshot so we can stop acting like Airbnb hid something. This is on the listing page even on mobile! The OP’s son wasn’t paying attention and it’s unfortunate but to act like something was hidden is disingenuous or coming from people who haven’t looked at the UI themselves.

Image

2. People act like Airbnb should refund when the policy clearly states they owe money to the host and guests cancel probably 10,000 times per day so they can’t eat the cost...

3. People who have never used Airbnb comment that they will not try it after reading this for short term rentals even though Airbnb allows a larger refund window than non-refundable hotels do. People are so upset by something that happened with cancellation on a long term rental policy that they ignore that it has nothing to do with short term rentals and effects a very small percentage of renters.

The situation is unfortunate, there is no doubt about it. If I were the host, I would most likely refund you unless I thought I wouldn’t be able to rent for that time. But ultimately, like I said before, you’re doing a long term rental and I’ve never had luck getting money back from a realtor or a Craigslist post before. I once moved out of an apartment after someone showed up at my house with a gun (in a neighborhood that was worse than I realized initially) and the owner would not let me out of the lease unless I found my own replacement for the unit I was leaving due to having a gun in my face. That is as uncool as it gets in my book, so should we all boycott Craigslist for apartments?
I completely agree. It is not obscure. I think the kid saw the 48 hour policy somewhere at sometime on the site and did not pay attention to the policy for HIS rental.

I don’t have a problem with the OP asking for the return of the $1200. But the owner has a complete right to so “no”. I think it is unethical to talk about bad reviews and credit card disputes when the person renting the unit is the one following the rules.

In my twenties, I put a contract on a house. My DH admitted the next day that he didn’t really like it but was trying to like it cause I did. We spent $3000 to get out of the contract ($2500 to the buyer and $500 to a lawyer).

Make this a life lesson for the kid. Don’t let him think he was screwed by a scamming company or owner.
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F150HD
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by F150HD »

Here is the page that makes it very clear what the refund policy is for long term: https://www.airbnb.com/home/cancellatio ... #long-term
If the guest books a long term reservation and decides to cancel the reservation before the start date, the first month of the reservation is paid to the host in full and not refunded to the guest.
^^^

pays to read the fine print and call beforehand to inquire about how cancellations are handled, I always do.

not siding w/ ABB as not personally a fan due to their fees. The renter should in good faith refund the $$, but clearly they are not going to.
Last edited by F150HD on Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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sfnerd
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by sfnerd »

8foot7 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:41 pm Dispute the charge. If there is this much confusion about it then that’s on Airbnb to refund after two hours. This wasn’t weeks later.

If dispute fails, then write out a letter to the HOA of the place and send it to the Airbnb host - “I’d like to work something out with you but I also feel a duty to let the governing body of your unit know that I was very dissatisfied as a short term renter of your unit with your policy, so I’m prepared to send this letter to your HOA, but if you can relieve my dissatisfaction then I won’t have any reason to send it”
Do this...
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by michaeljc70 »

Whether the policy is reasonable and fair is not really relevant (to this situation-to Airbnb's future/credibility that is something else). People enter into bad deals/contracts all the time. Though I can sympathize with the OP, it seems like there were a bunch of things overlooked by their son. 1) The house rules should have been understood before booking a reservation. 2) The cancellation policy is listed on the listing (at least when I went in and did it) and should have been understood. 3) When cancelling, I have to believe it told you what you would lose before doing the cancellation (I cannot verify this without making a reservation). When dealing with thousands of dollars online or in person you need to do some due diligence and be careful.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Sandtrap »

Dispute the charge on your credit card.

I have had good and bad experiences with VRBO and AirBnB over the years.
I've since written them off.
If I stay at a resort of other, I can check out at any time and find a better place, etc. For VRBO and AirBnB, I'm stuck with either a disagreeable host or compromised accommodations.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by michaeljc70 »

sfnerd wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:08 am
8foot7 wrote: Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:41 pm Dispute the charge. If there is this much confusion about it then that’s on Airbnb to refund after two hours. This wasn’t weeks later.

If dispute fails, then write out a letter to the HOA of the place and send it to the Airbnb host - “I’d like to work something out with you but I also feel a duty to let the governing body of your unit know that I was very dissatisfied as a short term renter of your unit with your policy, so I’m prepared to send this letter to your HOA, but if you can relieve my dissatisfaction then I won’t have any reason to send it”
Do this...
Who said there is an HOA? People keep saying that, but there has been no indication I've seen that there even is. Even if there is, some HOAs do allow Airbnbs.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Jags4186 »

JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
If you buy a car, drive it off the lot, show up at home and your spouse freaks out and demands you bring it back to the dealer for a refund, should the dealer accept the return? Even if that all happens within 2 hours? What if they offer to take it back but will keep $1200 to refinish the car?
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by ClevrChico »

tibbitts wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:53 am
ClevrChico wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:44 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
I agree. Whether hidden or obvious, this is a pretty harsh fee. Plans can change and there needs to be some accommodation within a certain amount of time. (At least for an accidental click, gosh.) This is another reason to use a traditional business setup for this sort of thing - a hotel.

I've seen credit cards surprisingly offer protection for travel cancellations like this. Most likely they will remove the charge.
Lots of hotels, almost all including the biggest chains, now give you a choice to pay more and have free cancellation privileges, or pay less and have none. If you cancel you usually pay one night's cost - but you're also usually only reserving a few nights or a week. You might owe only one night for a hotel, but you also might be paying three or four times as much for every night. Most people buy based on a combination of cancellation rules and price.

Some credit cards do have trip cancellation protection, but it's only for things like medical issues, not changing your mind.
Credit card companies will refund travel cancellation for non-medical issues. I was surprised by it, and I'm sure it varies by card. OP should at least check on it.

What if one accidentally added a zero to a Vanguard transaction? They have steps to make a best effort attempt to cancel it. They're not going to take 1/3 of your money to teach you a life lesson.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by dbr »

Katietsu wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:57 am
I completely agree. It is not obscure. I think the kid saw the 48 hour policy somewhere at sometime on the site and did not pay attention to the policy for HIS rental.
Correct. The whole issue and the only issue is did the renter agree to a rental with a refund or to a rental with a one month forfeit. It is very easy to see one policy somewhere and a different one on the actual rental time period booked. The terms on these rentals are different depending on the length of stay. If they have a screen shot of the rental, does that screen shot show refundable terms for their actual rental as actually placed? If it does there is an error at AirBNB that needs to be corrected.

I still want to know what the rental confirmation said. The missing information is they don't mention having one, but it must be there. Does AirBNB not present a confirmation on line and also e-mail it to the renter and would it not also show the terms of cancellation.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by goingup »

OP-
Thanks for posting your situation. I can't offer any suggestions, but am grateful to be advised of the seriousness in committing to a long-term rental on AirB&B.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

ClevrChico wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:16 am
tibbitts wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:53 am
ClevrChico wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:44 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
I agree. Whether hidden or obvious, this is a pretty harsh fee. Plans can change and there needs to be some accommodation within a certain amount of time. (At least for an accidental click, gosh.) This is another reason to use a traditional business setup for this sort of thing - a hotel.

I've seen credit cards surprisingly offer protection for travel cancellations like this. Most likely they will remove the charge.
Lots of hotels, almost all including the biggest chains, now give you a choice to pay more and have free cancellation privileges, or pay less and have none. If you cancel you usually pay one night's cost - but you're also usually only reserving a few nights or a week. You might owe only one night for a hotel, but you also might be paying three or four times as much for every night. Most people buy based on a combination of cancellation rules and price.

Some credit cards do have trip cancellation protection, but it's only for things like medical issues, not changing your mind.
Credit card companies will refund travel cancellation for non-medical issues. I was surprised by it, and I'm sure it varies by card. OP should at least check on it.

What if one accidentally added a zero to a Vanguard transaction? They have steps to make a best effort attempt to cancel it. They're not going to take 1/3 of your money to teach you a life lesson.
What credit card has actually refunded cancellation for non-medical (or related - death, etc.) reasons? As I said Chase wouldn't refund my rental car even if I could prove I was not physically present to rent the car. They did this on the basis that I had electronically agreed to charges from the vendor previously, not whether the charge was "reasonable", so basically the same situation as the OP. And this was a relatively premium annual-fee card and much less than $1200 was involved.

I had an error occur on a Vanguard transaction almost equivalent to adding a zero and Vanguard would not change it. They didn't do that to teach me a life lesson, it was just their policy.
Last edited by tibbitts on Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by letsgobobby »

Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
If you buy a car, drive it off the lot, show up at home and your spouse freaks out and demands you bring it back to the dealer for a refund, should the dealer accept the return? Even if that all happens within 2 hours? What if they offer to take it back but will keep $1200 to refinish the car?
Not at all comparable, as you are now attempting to return a lightly used vehicle. It's no longer new. It has been used albeit briefly. In your example the dealer would suffer actual loss of value by accepting the car back for a full refund. In fact most dealers will accept such a car back for lesser value, and usually try to put the buyer in another vehicle they prefer.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by letsgobobby »

Katietsu wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:57 am
curiouskitty wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 5:18 am I’m noticing three repeated fallacies in these comments

1. People call this policy covert, hidden, or act like it wasn’t shown to the user. In fact, it says very clearly ON THE SAME PAGE that one month isn’t refundable. I’ve attached the screenshot so we can stop acting like Airbnb hid something. This is on the listing page even on mobile! The OP’s son wasn’t paying attention and it’s unfortunate but to act like something was hidden is disingenuous or coming from people who haven’t looked at the UI themselves.

Image

2. People act like Airbnb should refund when the policy clearly states they owe money to the host and guests cancel probably 10,000 times per day so they can’t eat the cost...

3. People who have never used Airbnb comment that they will not try it after reading this for short term rentals even though Airbnb allows a larger refund window than non-refundable hotels do. People are so upset by something that happened with cancellation on a long term rental policy that they ignore that it has nothing to do with short term rentals and effects a very small percentage of renters.

The situation is unfortunate, there is no doubt about it. If I were the host, I would most likely refund you unless I thought I wouldn’t be able to rent for that time. But ultimately, like I said before, you’re doing a long term rental and I’ve never had luck getting money back from a realtor or a Craigslist post before. I once moved out of an apartment after someone showed up at my house with a gun (in a neighborhood that was worse than I realized initially) and the owner would not let me out of the lease unless I found my own replacement for the unit I was leaving due to having a gun in my face. That is as uncool as it gets in my book, so should we all boycott Craigslist for apartments?
I completely agree. It is not obscure. I think the kid saw the 48 hour policy somewhere at sometime on the site and did not pay attention to the policy for HIS rental.

I don’t have a problem with the OP asking for the return of the $1200. But the owner has a complete right to so “no”. I think it is unethical to talk about bad reviews and credit card disputes when the person renting the unit is the one following the rules.

In my twenties, I put a contract on a house. My DH admitted the next day that he didn’t really like it but was trying to like it cause I did. We spent $3000 to get out of the contract ($2500 to the buyer and $500 to a lawyer).

Make this a life lesson for the kid. Don’t let him think he was screwed by a scamming company or owner.
Sure, he will learn a life lesson. But he would learn it even if owner refunded him all but $100-$200. Instead he will learn that some people are real jerks, and that gig companies like rideshare and the VRBO crowd like to have all the advantages of a single brand when it suits them best (VC funding, political leverage, legal maneuvering) but claim non employer status when taking more responsibility would hurt their bottom line (rental disagreements such as this, rogue drivers who assault their passengers, etc).

Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Jags4186 »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:44 am
Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
If you buy a car, drive it off the lot, show up at home and your spouse freaks out and demands you bring it back to the dealer for a refund, should the dealer accept the return? Even if that all happens within 2 hours? What if they offer to take it back but will keep $1200 to refinish the car?
Not at all comparable, as you are now attempting to return a lightly used vehicle. It's no longer new. It has been used albeit briefly. In your example the dealer would suffer actual loss of value by accepting the car back for a full refund. In fact most dealers will accept such a car back for lesser value, and usually try to put the buyer in another vehicle they prefer.
Ok the buy the car and before you take delivery of the car you lose your job and decide you’re not in position to purchase a new card. The dealer should give you back your money? Sure it would be nice but it’s not a requirement.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by michaeljc70 »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:44 am
Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
If you buy a car, drive it off the lot, show up at home and your spouse freaks out and demands you bring it back to the dealer for a refund, should the dealer accept the return? Even if that all happens within 2 hours? What if they offer to take it back but will keep $1200 to refinish the car?
Not at all comparable, as you are now attempting to return a lightly used vehicle. It's no longer new. It has been used albeit briefly. In your example the dealer would suffer actual loss of value by accepting the car back for a full refund. In fact most dealers will accept such a car back for lesser value, and usually try to put the buyer in another vehicle they prefer.
The host could have made plans based on the rental. Some people rent out the place they live in. So, someone wants to rent for 2 months so they book a 2 month vacation to somewhere. Now their place will be available and the host has bought airline tickets and booked hotels or their own Airbnbs (of course it is unlikely they did this in 2 hours). Of course, they might be able to rent it again . However, most Airbnb rentals are not long term. So maybe they will rent it for weekends or whatever. Not the same as two solid months.

And back to the two hours. So, if it was 2 days but still a month or two from when the rental began, is that okay? What about 2 weeks later? What is a reasonable cut-off? Could the host have had someone else interested in those 2 hours? Yes. Unlikely, but yes. The policy is what it is. Don't reserve if you don't like it or understand it.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Jags4186 »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:52 am
Sure, he will learn a life lesson. But he would learn it even if owner refunded him all but $100-$200. Instead he will learn that some people are real jerks, and that gig companies like rideshare and the VRBO crowd like to have all the advantages of a single brand when it suits them best (VC funding, political leverage, legal maneuvering) but claim non employer status when taking more responsibility would hurt their bottom line (rental disagreements such as this, rogue drivers who assault their passengers, etc).

Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
It’s not the AirBnB host’s responsibility to teach an appropriate life lesson to the person who cancels. Perhaps the AirBnB host would charge more for rentals if there were no fee cancellations on these types of bookings.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by JonnyDVM »

Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:16 am
JonnyDVM wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:08 am Seems some people are missing the OP’s son cancelled within 2 hours part. I can’t believe anyone would think that the host is justified in collecting $1200. This isn’t a hotel where he’s cancelling 6 hrs before his reservation. He isn’t walking into the rental on day one and saying I don’t like the paint color, I don’t want to stay here anymore. He is cancelling two hours after booking, many weeks out. “Read the fine print” is not a justification. You can’t hide anything you want in fine print.
If you buy a car, drive it off the lot, show up at home and your spouse freaks out and demands you bring it back to the dealer for a refund, should the dealer accept the return? Even if that all happens within 2 hours? What if they offer to take it back but will keep $1200 to refinish the car?
Dealer would take it back with a reasonable fee. I think this exact case came up before. Wasn’t the car mustard or something? $1200 is not a reasonable fee in this instance. Also one could argue the car with added miles on it has depreciated a little. Same can’t be said in this case. Apartment did not lose value in 2 hours. One could make a convincing argument that the small inconvenience to the host is worth maybe $50 or something. Even that would annoy me, but to say it’s a $1200 fee for cancelling in 2 hours is outrageous. Short of a contract signed in blood, no one is going to convince me otherwise
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by letsgobobby »

Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:00 am
letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:52 am
Sure, he will learn a life lesson. But he would learn it even if owner refunded him all but $100-$200. Instead he will learn that some people are real jerks, and that gig companies like rideshare and the VRBO crowd like to have all the advantages of a single brand when it suits them best (VC funding, political leverage, legal maneuvering) but claim non employer status when taking more responsibility would hurt their bottom line (rental disagreements such as this, rogue drivers who assault their passengers, etc).

Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
It’s not the AirBnB host’s responsibility to teach an appropriate life lesson to the person who cancels. Perhaps the AirBnB host would charge more for rentals if there were no fee cancellations on these types of bookings.
Given the 2 hours, a $1200 (one month) fee is unreasonable. Other than, “that’s the policy,” there is simply no cogent argument for reasonableness. Host has every option to return the fee, reduce the fee, etc., Instead is playing hardball just because he can. He hasn’t suffered any damages unless he wants to claim, in that 2 hour window, he booked a nonrefundable airline ticket to Tahiti.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:52 am
Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
I was saying that it would not be reasonable to expect relief from the card company because the vendor has an electronically-signed agreement promising to pay and can prove that to the credit card company. But I believe I had a better case than the OP and the point was that I still didn't get any relief from the card company.

I suspect that in situations where people report the credit card company has provided relief, those have occurred because the vendor went along with the appeal from the card company, maybe unknown to the consumer. In my example Chase appealed to Avis and Avis refused to reverse the charge. I think the notion that credit card companies are taking multi-hundred-dollar or multi-thousand-dollar hits on behalf of consumers is mistaken, and in the OP's case it's pretty clear the credit card company would be out $1200 if they accepted the appeal. $10? Yes, I can see a card company just eating that.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by Jags4186 »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:17 am
Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:00 am
letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:52 am
Sure, he will learn a life lesson. But he would learn it even if owner refunded him all but $100-$200. Instead he will learn that some people are real jerks, and that gig companies like rideshare and the VRBO crowd like to have all the advantages of a single brand when it suits them best (VC funding, political leverage, legal maneuvering) but claim non employer status when taking more responsibility would hurt their bottom line (rental disagreements such as this, rogue drivers who assault their passengers, etc).

Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
It’s not the AirBnB host’s responsibility to teach an appropriate life lesson to the person who cancels. Perhaps the AirBnB host would charge more for rentals if there were no fee cancellations on these types of bookings.
Given the 2 hours, a $1200 (one month) fee is unreasonable. Other than, “that’s the policy,” there is simply no cogent argument for reasonableness. Host has every option to return the fee, reduce the fee, etc., Instead is playing hardball just because he can. He hasn’t suffered any damages unless he wants to claim, in that 2 hour window, he booked a nonrefundable airline ticket to Tahiti.
That’s the agreement the renter made. Look, I understand it sucks and it seems exorbitant, but the renter either went in knowing that was the policy and hoped he could talk his way out of it later OR blatantly disregarded the policy when making the booking. For people who do not sell on eBay or participate on AirBnB or VRBO you have no idea how often the service provider/seller is taken advantage of by buyers/service users. The fact that there are some protections for sellers/providers in this instance is a GOOD THING for AirBnB. I’m sorry the OP is out $1200, but buyers/users will use every fine print piece of information to wiggle out of their responsibilities if possible. I see no reason why a seller/provider shouldn’t hold the buyers to the same standard.
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by tibbitts »

letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:17 am
Jags4186 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:00 am
letsgobobby wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:52 am
Sure, he will learn a life lesson. But he would learn it even if owner refunded him all but $100-$200. Instead he will learn that some people are real jerks, and that gig companies like rideshare and the VRBO crowd like to have all the advantages of a single brand when it suits them best (VC funding, political leverage, legal maneuvering) but claim non employer status when taking more responsibility would hurt their bottom line (rental disagreements such as this, rogue drivers who assault their passengers, etc).

Tibbits, your experience with Chase wasn't quite the same, as the car rental company furnished proof that "you" had rented. Ultimately it was they who made you whole.
It’s not the AirBnB host’s responsibility to teach an appropriate life lesson to the person who cancels. Perhaps the AirBnB host would charge more for rentals if there were no fee cancellations on these types of bookings.
Given the 2 hours, a $1200 (one month) fee is unreasonable. Other than, “that’s the policy,” there is simply no cogent argument for reasonableness. Host has every option to return the fee, reduce the fee, etc., Instead is playing hardball just because he can. He hasn’t suffered any damages unless he wants to claim, in that 2 hour window, he booked a nonrefundable airline ticket to Tahiti.
I agree that it would be nice for the vendor to make an accommodation. But where do you draw the line? 1 day? 1 week? 1 month?
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Re: Huge AIrBNB Cancellation Charge

Post by leeks »

Yes there should be a line. 48 hours is where airbnb draws the line for most bookings. It would be the obvious choice for them to extend it to far-in-advance long-term bookings.
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