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    COVID-19 cleaning guidelines for Experiences

    Guidelines to help Hosts adhere to Airbnb's cleaning requirements.
    By Airbnb on Jun 17, 2020
    5 min read
    Updated Aug 30, 2021


    • Hosts are required to follow our 5-step enhanced cleaning process prior to each Experience

    • Hosts are also required to following their local laws and guidelines on mask-wearing and social distancing

    • Cleaning and sanitizing are two separate steps, and it’s important to do both

    We want to help empower Hosts with information on hosting guests in their space safely during these unprecedented times. We’ve provided the guidelines below to help you clean and sanitize your homes, spaces you manage, and any equipment provided to guests during your Experience. In addition, make sure you also review and follow any additional cleaning guidance from government or health authorities in your local jurisdiction.

    The 5-step enhanced cleaning process

    The 5-step enhanced cleaning process is a set of cleaning practices that all Hosts are required to follow between each Experience instance, in addition to following their local laws and guidelines.

    1. Prepare your equipment and ventilate the space before cleaning
    2. Clean each area by removing dust and debris
    3. Sanitize all high-touch surfaces, appliances, and equipment
    4. Check that the space has been thoroughly cleaned and sanitized
    5. Reset the space for the next guest and restock your supplies

    The difference between cleaning and sanitizing

    First, let’s start with the fundamentals: It's important to both clean and sanitize your space and any equipment before welcoming guests. Cleaning and sanitizing are two separate steps, and it’s important to do both in the correct order.

    • Cleaning involves the removal of germs and dirt from surfaces. For example, using a soapy sponge to wipe off a kitchen countertop or stovetop.
    • Sanitizing involves the use of chemicals to reduce the number of germs and bacteria. For example, spraying a chemical disinfectant on high-touch surfaces such as doorknobs, life jackets, sports gear, and kitchen appliances.

    Step 1: Prepare

    Ventilate rooms before you clean.

    Regulatory authorities such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. CDC recommend opening outside doors and windows, and using ventilating fans to increase air circulation in the space before cleaning.

    Gather the right cleaning supplies

    We recommend only using disinfectant and sanitizer solutions that are registered with your local government’s chemical regulators (e.g., the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or he European Chemicals Agency).

    Review the safety guidelines for your chemicals

    Always read the labels on your products to understand their active ingredients and how to use them properly. For more on how to read the labels on your products and their Safety Data Sheets, check your local authority. For example, in the U.S., refer to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s guidelines, and in the EU, refer to the European Chemicals Agency’s rules.

    Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water

    If that’s not possible, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.

    Wear protective equipment

    Before you enter the space, consider putting on protective equipment such as disposable gloves, aprons or gowns, and masks or cloth facial coverings.

    Take out all the garbage

    Starting with this step helps prevent dirty garbage from contaminating the space once it has been cleaned. Make sure to line all the garbage cans, which will make it easier to dispose of tissues and other waste.

    Unplug before cleaning

    For your safety and to protect fixtures, remember to unplug appliances before cleaning. Plugged appliances that are turned “off” are still connected to electricity until unplugged. You can also shut off the power at the breaker.

    Safety Reminder: Consider wearing clean protective equipment (e.g. masks) before you enter your space. Be sure to read all safety labels so you understand how to use cleaning chemicals properly.

    Step 2: Clean

    Dust the space and sweep or vacuum the floor

    When dusting, start from the top down to ensure there are no visible signs of dirt. Sweep all hard surface floors and vacuum carpeting.

    Clean hard surfaces with soap and water

    Wipe surfaces that guests come into contact with to remove dirt, grease, dust, and germs. Hard surfaces include things like countertops, tables, sinks, cabinets, and floors. When mopping, work from the back corner of the room to the front, and dispose of the water in a sink that has not yet been cleaned.

    Safety Reminder: Do not touch your face while cleaning to help prevent the spread of germs.

    Step 3: Sanitize

    Once a hard surface is clean, spray with disinfectant

    Focus on sanitizing all frequently touched surfaces in the space (such as doorknobs and kitchen appliances). Be sure to sanitize electronics based on the manufacturer’s cleaning directions.

    Let the disinfectant stand for the specified length of time

    The product label will specify the wet contact time needed for the chemicals to effectively sanitize a surface. This allows the chemicals time to kill as many germs as possible.

    Allow to air-dry

    If the surface dries before the wet contact time, there’s no guarantee that the product has killed the pathogens claimed on the label. When possible, allow the surface to air-dry.

    Safety Reminder: Be sure to read all safety labels to ensure you’re using cleaning chemicals properly.

    Step 4: Check

    Review the room-by-room guidelines

    Follow the checklist for each room to ensure thorough cleaning and sanitization.

    Double check that all high-touch surfaces were sanitized

    Correct anything that may have been missed.

    Step 5: Reset

    Dispose of and wash your cleaning supplies

    Throw away disposable products such as disinfectant wipes. Be sure to also clean any other tools that were used. Wash any cleaning cloths at the highest heat setting possible that is appropriate for the material.

    Safely remove any cleaning gear once you are done cleaning

    Dispose of or wash any protective gear according to their usage guidelines.

    Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water

    If that’s not possible, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.

    Set out cleaning supplies for your guests

    Empower your guests by setting out guest cleaning supplies they can use, such as disposable paper towels, disposable gloves, disinfectant spray or wipes, hand sanitizer, and extra hand soap.

    Visually assess each room to ensure the stage is set for the next guests

    Imagine yourself as a guest entering your space for the first time.

    Restock your cleaning supplies

    Be sure to take a moment to check expiration dates and refill any supplies that you have used, so you’re ready for the next Experience.

    And an important safety reminder: Always keep chemical products out of reach of children.

    Customizing for your space

    We understand that some Experiences may use particular rooms or spaces in a home. For further cleaning guidance on specific rooms in your home that guests may enter, you can learn more here. This cleaning guide includes checklists and further guidance on how best to prepare your space. You may also want to consider limiting guest access to areas of your space to reduce possible transmission.

    Jun 17, 2020
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