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    Answers for travelers about the coronavirus

    Answers for travelers about the coronavirus

    Learn how we’re supporting you with cancellation policies and new programs.
    By Airbnb on 10 Mar 2020
    7 min read

    Updated March 17, 2020

    We know there’s a lot of uncertainty around the coronavirus (COVID-19) and whether or not it will impact your travel plans. To help support travelers, we’re tracking your questions and answering some of them here. We’ll keep updating this page as the situation evolves and as more answers become available.

    I want to book a trip, but I’m not sure if the situation with the coronavirus will continue to evolve. What should I do?
    Understandably, you may feel uncertain about booking future travel right now. We strongly urge all guests to carefully consider the cancellation policy on any reservation they make and to choose listings that provide flexibility. Our extenuating circumstances policy will not cover bookings made after March 14 for circumstances related to COVID-19, or any reservation that has already begun.

    For extra peace of mind, we recommend finding a listing with a flexible cancellation policy—so we’ve added a search filter to make it easy to find and book those types of listings.

    How can I find places to stay with flexible cancellation policies?
    Cancellation policies are set by hosts and can vary (flexible, moderate, or strict). You can find details about the cancellation policy of each place to stay on the main page of each listing. We’ve added a new filter to make it easier for you to search for places with flexible cancellation policies—please check back here for more details.

    I booked a trip on Airbnb recently, and the coronavirus is affecting my plans. Can I cancel my reservation? 
    This is a confusing time to travel, and the situation has evolved rapidly in recent months. In response to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) declaration of COVID-19 as a pandemic, we’ve now extended our extenuating circumstances policy to apply globally* to all eligible reservations booked on or before March 14 and with a check-in between March 14 and April 14.

      In simple terms, that means that for eligible reservations:

      • Guests have the option to cancel reservations up to the time of check-in for a full refund
      • Hosts can cancel reservations up to the time of check-in without worrying about cancellation charges or impact to your Superhost status
      • Our service fees will be refunded in full for every cancellation

        *This does not apply to domestic travel in mainland China. Please check here for more information. Luxe or Luxury Retreats reservations are covered under the Luxe guest refund policy.

        What’s the extenuating circumstances policy?
        Airbnb’s extenuating circumstances policy gives guests and hosts the option to cancel without charges if they’re impacted by things like serious injury or illness, natural disasters, travel restrictions, and other unforeseen events. In response to the WHO’s declaration of COVID-19 as a pandemic, we’ve extended this policy globally to all eligible reservations booked on or before March 14 and with a check-in date between March 14 and April 14. If your reservation has already begun (the check-in has passed), the policy does not apply.

        I’m not in an impacted area, but I’m not able to make the trip due to the coronavirus. Can I cancel?
        If your reservation was booked on or before March 14, and has a check-in date between March 14 and April 14, you can cancel your reservation for a full refund through our extenuating circumstances policy. However, please note this policy will not cover any bookings made after March 14 for circumstances related to COVID-19, or any reservation that has already begun. You can learn more at this Help Center article.

        I booked a trip on Airbnb recently, and I can’t decide if I should still make the trip. Should I go?
        We recommend following guidance from governmental and health authorities. We’ve compiled some travel advisories and helpful resources to make it easier for you to make this important decision.

        I booked an Airbnb Experience. What do I need to know?
        We're pausing all experiences starting March 18 through at least April 3, 2020. We made this difficult decision because experiences are designed to bring people together, and health organizations around the world have advised against this kind of interaction as one of the best ways to protect communities. Read this Help Center article for the latest updates.

        There’s more news about the coronavirus every day. What’s the best way for me to stay informed?
        We’re updating Airbnb.com/COVID19 every day, and it’s a good place to start for updates and guidance. For anything pertaining to your region or your trip, we recommend following guidance from governmental and health authorities.

        A host just canceled on me. What happens now?
        We know cancellations can be upsetting, even when they happen for an understandable reason. Keep in mind that hosts who cancel their reservation under our extenuating circumstances policy have been impacted themselves and by canceling, they’re helping to protect the well-being of our entire community. You’ll of course get a full refund for your reservation.

        If a host cancels on you and your reservation isn’t covered by our extenuating circumstances policy for the coronavirus, you'll still get a full refund that you can use toward rebooking.

        What should I do if I’m uncomfortable staying with a host?
        If you’re worried about staying with hosts in certain areas, we understand your concern. Before you cancel a reservation, please keep in mind that Airbnb has a nondiscrimination policy. Remember to treat each host with inclusion and respect, which means making sure that you're holding each reservation—and decision about cancellation—to the same standards. We’ve outlined some guidelines and questions you can consider asking to help you get the information you need.

        I’m unable to get a refund based on my host’s cancellation policy. Why?
        Airbnb is a community of guests and hosts who come together through the platform. Hosts determine when they make their listings available, how much they charge, specific rules about how the space can be used—for example, how many guests can stay at any one time—and establish a cancellation policy. In many cases, hosts rely on their Airbnb earnings to make ends meet, which can make it difficult for them to make exceptions to their policies.

        If your reservation was booked on or before March 14, and has a check-in date between March 14 and April 14, you can cancel your reservation for a full refund under our extenuating circumstances policy. We also want to clarify that Airbnb won’t benefit from any reservations canceled under this policy—our service fees will be refunded in full for every cancellation. We’re in this together.

        However, please note this policy does not cover any bookings made after March 14, bookings with a check-in date after April 14, or bookings that have already begun (the check-in has passed)—those will all be handled according to the listing’s cancellation policy as usual.

        I booked a trip in an impacted area. What should I do?
        If your reservation was booked on or before March 14 and has a check-in date between March 14 and April 14, your trip may be covered by our extenuating circumstances policy, which allows you to cancel without charges. Please bookmark this Help Center page for updated information.

        If you need to cancel your trip, please follow these instructions on how to cancel a reservation that qualifies under our extenuating circumstances policy.

        I booked a place to stay on Airbnb for an event that has been canceled. Can I cancel my reservation?
        We know that many of our travelers book places to stay on Airbnb for events like Coachella, SXSW, Mobile World Congress, and others. If an event you were planning to attend has been canceled and your reservation is not covered by our extenuating circumstances policy, please check the cancellation policy on your reservation. We’ve rolled out a tool so hosts can refund reservations like these that aren’t covered under our extenuating circumstances policy.

        I booked an Airbnb Luxe property in an impacted area. Am I covered by the extenuating circumstances policy?
        Our extenuating circumstances policy doesn’t apply to Airbnb Luxe reservations, which are subject to a separate Luxe guest refund policy.

        I need help. Where can I find resources online?
        We know it can be frustrating when you can’t get an answer right away. We’re committed to helping you get the help and information you need, which is why we’ve launched Airbnb.com/COVID19 in addition to continuing to answer your calls, chats, and emails as quickly as possible.

        Many common issues can be resolved online, especially if you’re dealing with a reservation that falls under our extenuating circumstances policy. You can also head to our Help Center to find more answers.

        I still have questions. Who should I contact?
        We'd like to encourage impacted travelers to reach out to our community support team with questions or to get help with canceling reservations. We appreciate your patience as we prioritize those needing immediate support and ask that you only reach out to us if your reservation is in the next 72 hours. If you have an urgent question, please also check Airbnb.com/COVID19 or the Help Center.

        We know how disruptive something like the coronavirus has been to travelers, and we're here to help. Thanks for working together with us to protect the safety and well-being of our community.

        Information contained in this article may have changed since publication.

        Airbnb
        10 Mar 2020
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