Airbnb will no longer offer refunds related to COVID-19 starting May 31

Airbnb today announced that it will soon no longer be offering refunds for circumstances related to COVID-19, including instances where a guest or host becomes ill with COVID-19 – reflecting an update to the company policy on extenuating circumstances. Starting May 31, Airbnb host cancellation policies will apply “as usual,” Airbnb said, though some bookings made before May 31 may still be eligible for a refund if they qualify under the terms. company policy.

Airbnb – which yesterday again engaged to a fully remote workplace – said the change was made in consultation with his medical advisers.

“Some in the travel industry stopped this type of policy months ago, while others provided none at all,” the company wrote in a statement. blog post. “[W]We believe the time has come to take the same step.”

At the start of the pandemic, Airbnb widened its policy of extenuating circumstances to cover risks related to the new coronavirus, allowing guests to cancel and receive a full refund as well as hosts to cancel future reservations without penalty. The company also has engaged $250 million to help cover cancellations due to COVID-19, paying hosts 25% of what they would normally receive under their cancellation policy.

The IPO of the company deposit in November 2020 revealed the dramatic scale of the impact, including a 72% drop in income leading to the loss of 1,800 jobs in May 2020.

Cutting costs and doubling “experiences” and extended stays helped Airbnb recover. The company beat Wall Street estimates in the fourth quarter of 2021, reporting revenue of $1.53 billion, up 78% from a net loss of $3.89 billion a year earlier. But bookings for nights and experiences are down nearly 8% from the previous quarter, a number that Airbnb is no doubt eager to turn around.

“[A]nearly two-thirds of the world’s population have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. And many countries have now implemented life plans with COVID-19 as it has become part of our world,” the company wrote in the post published today.

Spurred on by economic and political pressures, some businesses and policymakers have called for a “return to normal”. But health experts prevent against the premature lifting of mitigation measures. While Uber and Lyft ended mask mandates in carpools and a federal judge in Florida struck down the US Transportation Security Administration’s mask rules, workloads in New York and Washington, DC increased. Again this week, a Princess Cruise Lines ship moored in San Francisco with 143 cases of COVID-19.

When contacted for clarification, an Airbnb spokesperson said he had nothing to share beyond the post.

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