Canceling vacation rentals due to the coronavirus pandemic could result in a refund.
Those who booked through short-term home rental website Airbnb before COVID-19 hit in mid-March could get some or all of their money back on rental bookings depending on when the trip is scheduled and the host’s policy.
Reservations or stays made on or before March 14 of this year with a check-in date that’s between mid-March and June 30 may be canceled before check-in, according to Airbnb’s website. Guests will have the option to cancel or get a refund without charge, but guests will be required to provide documentation for emergency-related cancellations.
“In order to cancel under the policy, you will be required to attest to the facts of and/or provide supporting documentation for your extenuating circumstance,” Airbnb’s website says.
Transportation disruptions due to the coronavirus pandemic may also be the reason for refunding, cancellations or postponing a trip. Travelers will be asked to provide documentation — such as a screenshot or website link — of train, bus, ferry or flight cancellations to the destination that shows the carrier was not operating on the day of travel, Airbnb’s guidelines say.
If a host’s cancellation policy does not give a full refund during the time of cancellation, guests will be given the option to ask a host for a full refund before finalizing the cancellation.
The virus has posed travel-industry wide threats forcing many in the hospitality business to temporarily close or get hit with cancellations. It’s also significantly impacted employees. Airbnb laid off 1,900 workers or about 25 percent of its workforce, the company’s co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky announced earlier this month.