Penalty Free Cancellations for Airbnb Hosts with Instant Book!

Instant Book is a great feature that enables guests to book accommodations without having to go through a formal inquiry process with the host.  This makes getting bookings simpler and will help you make more money!  But, what if you receive a booking from a guest that makes you uncomfortable?  With Instant Book, Airbnb hosts can cancel reservations penalty free.  Here’s what you need to know!


Reasons to Cancel an Instant Book Reservation without PenaltyPenalty Free Cancellations for Airbnb Hosts with Instant Book! - Best Airbnb Hosting Tips

According to Airbnb, “Hosts never have to host a reservation they’re uncomfortable with.”  While Airbnb does not give concrete guidelines as to what constitutes a valid reason for a penalty free cancellation, they do give a few examples.

  • Poor Review History – If other Airbnb hosts have given the guest negative reviews, you can use this as a valid reason to cancel the Instant Book reservation.
  • Unresponsive Guest – Just like hosts are expected to answer questions, so to are guests.  If your guest is not responding to vital questions about their trip, this can be reason enough to have the reservation cancelled.
  • House Rules Violations – Some guests (whether intentionally or not) can end up breaking your house rules.  If you get the impression that the guest will break your house rules, the reservation can be cancelled without penalty.  Examples include smoking in the home or bringing a pet.

I have used this cancellation technique with a guest who intended to use my accommodations to host a dinner party.  This violated my policy of ‘no gatherings’ and Airbnb promptly cancelled the reservation without any penalty!

Note:  Cancellations for discriminatory reasons are not permitted!

What Does Penalty Free Cancellation Mean?

Cancelling a reservation under other circumstances can have a number of consequences for Airbnb hosts.  When cancelling an Instant Book reservation with just cause, you can avoid all penalties!

  • No Cancellation Fee
  • Calendar Remains Unblocked
  • Automatic Cancellation Review is Not Posted
  • Keep your Superhost Status (or eligibility)

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