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    Choose the right cancellation policy for you

    Find a policy that works for you and your hosting needs.
    By Airbnb on Feb 5, 2020
    4 min read
    Updated Jan 19, 2023

    Highlights

    • The right cancellation policy could help you attract the bookings you want

    • Consider your needs, goals, and ideal guests when choosing a policy

    • You can update your policy anytime

    Choosing a cancellation policy can be a balancing act. You want to avoid cancellations while still attracting guests—and today’s guests want more flexibility as they plan their upcoming travels.

    Because every Host has different needs, we’ve created several cancellation policies. You can choose the standard and long-term policies that work best for you.*

    Standard policies

    Your standard cancellation policy is for shorter reservations. It applies to all bookings of fewer than 28 consecutive nights.

    • Flexible cancellation policy: Guests can cancel up to 24 hours before check-in for a full refund, and you won’t be paid. If they cancel less than 24 hours before check-in and never check in, you’ll be paid for the first night. If they cancel after check-in, you’ll be paid for each night they stay, plus 1 additional night.
    • Moderate cancellation policy: Guests can cancel up to 5 days before check-in for a full refund, and you won’t be paid. If they cancel after that, you’ll be paid for each night they stay, plus 1 additional night and 50% for all unspent nights.
    • Firm cancellation policy: To receive a full refund, guests must cancel at least 30 days before check-in. They can also get a full refund within 48 hours of booking if the cancellation occurs at least 14 days before check-in. If they cancel between 7 and 30 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 50% for all nights. If they cancel less than 7 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 100% for all nights.
    • Strict cancellation policy: To receive a full refund, guests must cancel within 48 hours of booking, and the cancellation must occur at least 14 days before check-in. If they cancel between 7 and 14 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 50% for all nights. If they cancel after that, you’ll be paid 100% for all nights.

    Long-term policies

    Your long-term cancellation policy applies to reservations of 28 consecutive nights or more. It overrides your standard policy.

    • Firm long-term cancellation policy: To receive a full refund, guests must cancel at least 30 days before check-in. If a guest cancels after that, you’ll be paid 100% for all nights spent, plus 30 additional nights. If fewer than 30 nights remain on the reservation when the guest cancels, you’ll be paid 100% for all remaining nights.
    • Strict long-term cancellation policy: Guests who cancel a reservation can get a full refund only if they cancel their reservation within 48 hours of booking and at least 28 days before their check-in date. If a guest cancels after that, you’ll be paid for all nights spent plus 30 additional nights from the date of cancellation. If a guest cancels with fewer than 30 days remaining on the reservation, you’ll be paid 100% for all of those remaining nights.

    Note: Cleaning fees are always refunded if the guest cancels before check-in, regardless of the Host’s cancellation policy. Refunds on Airbnb guest service fees depend on several factors. Learn more about refunds on fees

    You can update your policy anytime to control how far in advance guests can cancel before check-in and receive a refund.

    Which policy is right for me?

    It depends on how a cancellation would impact you and your hosting business. Think about your needs and goals, as well as your ideal guests, and choose the policy that supports them.

    Consider choosing a flexible policy if:

    • It’s the low season, and you want to attract guests interested in having some flexibility in their travel plans.
    • It’s the high season, and you feel confident that your space will get rebooked if a guest cancels.
    • Your listing is in a competitive location, and you aren’t concerned about late cancellations.

    Consider choosing a moderate policy if:

    • You want to discourage last-minute cancellations.
    • You want to have some time to get another booking if a guest cancels.
    • You still want to attract guests whose plans require more coordination, like business travelers who need to make refundable reservations.

    Consider choosing a firm policy if:

    • You want to avoid cancellations but can handle them with enough advance notice.
    • You like having more time to get another booking if a guest cancels.
    • Your space is in demand year-round.

    What sets the firm policy apart from the strict policy is that guests can still get a full refund with the firm policy if they cancel 30 days before check-in.

    Consider choosing a strict cancellation policy if:

    • You want to avoid cancellations and don’t have time to find or manage replacement bookings.
    • You host by yourself, and last-minute cancellations are very disruptive to your schedule.
    • Your space is in high demand, and a strict policy won’t deter guests from booking it.

    Some Hosts earn more money by adding a non-refundable option to their cancellation policy. The option allows guests to choose a stricter cancellation policy for a discounted price, typically 10% off your base price. If they opt in and later cancel the reservation, you keep your entire payout for all nights booked.

    Choosing a cancellation policy is all about finding what works for you and your guests. Just remember that many people want flexibility when traveling. To help secure their reservations, try starting with the most flexible cancellation policy that supports your hosting routine.

    Discover more in our guide to setting up a successful listing

    *Different policies apply to reservations in Germany, Italy, and South Korea.

    Information contained in this article may have changed since publication.

    Airbnb
    Feb 5, 2020
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