Stop Airbnb Strict cancellation Policy
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For years I have been a huge fan of Airbnb. I have utilized their website to book places to rent and I have listed my house as well.
I recently booked a two bedroom Apt. In Phoenix Arizona for the final four weekend because myself and four other people were hired to work the event. It was only affordable if all of us split the cost of the house together. I booked the apartment and I noticed the cancellation was strict but the wording led me to believe as long as I cancelled 7 days prior, I would get a full refund. Well one person had to cancel because he lost his mother and another person was removed from the program. After that, another person had to cancel because she decided with so many people not able to come, she could not afford to go anymore.
I tried to cancel the reservation so that I could get a full refund and when I did, It said that my refund would be 273.00 which means I was still going to have to pay for half of the reservation. I emailed Martha to explain to her what happened and she said there was nothing that she could do which is a complete lie. As someone who as hosted as well, you are able to choose your nightly rate, choose the cancellation policy and decide what you want tenants to pay as far as tax, cleaning, etc. I mentioned this to her as well as the fact that it was final four weekend and that she would be able to rebook the apt. She said if she rebooked, that she would refund me my money..
Technically I could have been refunded the full amount because there was a death in the family of one of the travelers but I didn't feel comfortable asking him for a copy of his mother's death certificate after he had lost his mother. I was hoping that Martha, the family woman she claims to be, would be understanding.
Martha was able to book 3 of the 4 nights we were scheduled to be there but I was only refunded 85.00 for one of the nights which mathematically doesn't add up and there is no break down of the changes. I am still being charged 85.00 dollars for one night and 73.00 dollars in service fees.
I paid 519.00. I was refunded 273.00 initially when I canceled and then 85.00 which was the cost of one night stay without any fees which equals 361.00. I am still paying 158.00 for a place i never even set foot in. 158.00 minus the 85.00 nightly rate is 73.00 dollars in taxes and service fees. I mentioned that mathematically, it does not make sense because Airbnb fees are supposed to be refunded as well as cleaning fees, etc. I appear to be paying 73.00 in taxes which i believe to be unethical. Had I booked a hotel, i would have been given a full refund up to 24 hours advance notice. I am including the strict policy on airbnb. We as travelers know that many things can happen and plans change. If you want your house rented full time then get a full time renter. The benefit of airbnb is supposed to be that it is more affordable than many hotels but in this case it cost me a lot more. It seems like a small amount but that could be a huge set back financially to some.
I feel like Airbnb is collecting fees on cancelations that are unethical. Please sign my petition.
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