USA Today Coverage of AirBNB Covid Cancellation Policy

Airbnb hosts

David Oliver of USA Today was among the first to explore the impact AirBNB’s changes to its extenuating circumstances policy was having on hosts and interviewed HostGPO co-founder Michael Skiles about the impact of AirBNB’s unilateral decision to refund guests irrespective of hosts’ cancellation policies.

Below is an excerpt, click here to read the full article:

Michael Skiles, the CEO and co-founder of HostGPO Inc., which represents thousands of vacation rental operators, called Airbnb’s decision to fully refund guests “a disaster” for hosts.

“Spring is when many hosts count on earning enough to support themselves through slower months, but now we have hosts who are reporting huge losses of up to 80% of their monthly revenue and who are struggling to keep their homes,” Skiles told USA TODAY. “Many have started to lay off employees and cleaning teams with no other options.”

“Since Airbnb has given away so much of hosts’ money without their consent and hosts are struggling, I hope they’ll do something substantial to share in the costs that, so far, hosts have borne alone,” Skiles says. “At the very least, they should have a moratorium on the host service fees they charge for non-canceled bookings so that hosts can make up a small fraction of lost revenue.”

Oliver also wrote a great follow-up piece once AirBNB apologized and promised $250 million to help hosts who were hurt by this decision.

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